Few things are more frightening to our current generation than the fear of missing out. Many of us are constantly glued to our phones, paying them more attention than the human sitting beside us. Painfully aware of the negative impact social media is having on their relationship, Su (Sunita Mani) and Jack (John Reynolds) decide to spend a week off the grid at a friend’s cabin in upstate New York. Their noble intentions are met with the worst possible timing.
Writing/Directing team Alex Huston Fischer and Eleanor Wilson have done a wonderful job crafting a sci-fi rom-com that sidesteps cliches and pratfalls that are normally seen in this genre. Su and Jack may not always be on the same page, but they are clearly in love with each other. It’s refreshing to see couples on screen who are playfully goofy with each other, but still mature enough to self examine their emotional reactions to things. Their cabin trip, and the alien invasion that occurs during it, give them the opportunity to explore a variety of aspects to their relationship. Are they too tied to their careers? Is Jack bad at being “a man?” Should they ever have kids together? Is that a decorative pouffe on the floor or a potentially lethal alien?
The script smartly avoids telling us too much about the pouffes. We’re not even sure how malevolent their intentions are although many have died at their proboscises. Instead, they represent the fear of the unknown and are the driving factor for the second half of the film. Too many rom-coms rely on a gratuitous misunderstanding that could be easily cleared up for the third act, something that makes most of them predictable and unrealistic. How many relationships have really reached a breaking point because of an evil twin or an accidentally observed platonic hug? Often it’s the small unassuming things that can cause a real crisis if gone unchecked.
“Save Yourselves!” is clever, charming, and a lot of fun. Check it out in theatres starting on Friday, October 2nd, or on-demand Tuesday, October 6th!