Germany/USA, 2011, 91 min
Miranda July’s (Me and You and Everyone We Know, SFIFF 2005) highly anticipated, darkly humorous second feature burrows its way into the lives of a couple (July and Hamish Linklater) contemplating cat adoption. As the rudderless protagonists face the impending responsibility of pet ownership, they see it as a deadline for living their lives fully. Their new outlook exposes foreign desires and unforeseen opportunities as they each face a pair of basic, ultimately terrifying questions: What do you want your life to be? And how does one get there? Using a number of disparate elements—voiceover narration by a cat, an ambulatory shirt, varying degrees of dance instruction, gold chains, ecology, time travel and poetry—the film’s myriad approaches bely a singular concern with our relationship to time. July investigates the metaphysics of decisionmaking and what it means to be stuck. In this world, making decisions too lightly or too gravely can have dire consequences not only for our loved ones but also for cats awaiting adoption. The Future confirms her status as a master—in film, performance and writing—of the revealing detail, ever capable of making audiences surprised by their everyday worlds. With great originality in narrative form and visual design, The Future unfolds in unexpected and satisfying ways.