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Palm Springs

Updated: Jul 16, 2021

One stab! This movie BARELY made me want to stab my eyballs out for how it presents its female characters. Huzzah! This Hulu original movie came out in July, 2020, and it's about a man- then two men- then two men and a woman- living the same day over, and over again. The timing-early pandemic- was pretty perfect for this theme, and the film is delightful. It's "Groundhog Day"-esque, but with a little less moral arch and a lot more sci-fi cave of wonders, drinking, swearing, cunnilingus, physics, and attempted murder.

Andy Samberg (SNL (specifically, Dick-in-a-Box), Brooklyn Nine-Nine) and Cristin Milioti (the mother on How I Met Your Mother) have great chemistry. They meet on the man's maybe hundredth? ten thousandth? time is never established and he's lost all perspective- time going to the same wedding reception. They've met before, but only he knows this. Whereas in "Groundhog Day," where we see the protagonist discover his awful situation in real time, the man in this film has gotten used to it. He knows all the people, all the beats, all the laws of this weird repetitive world- including how hurting people and getting hurt is very, very real, but how dying will just restart your day again.

All the side characters are phenomenal, too, including J.K. Simmons (always amahzing) and TV and movie's favorite D.I.L.F., Peter Gallagher. There's existential talk of why we're on the planet, what we owe each other, what the point of hoping and getting to really know yourself and each other is...but mostly there's hilarious, weird, totally unexpected humor and twists. And dance numbers.

In this love story, the main woman is the scarred and scarring hero who rescues the unlikely prince. I think she was as funny, quirky, flawed, and fully-realized as the male characters, but a lot of her backstory is about her relationships with dudes. My only other feminist beef would be with Veronica from "Riverdale" (Camila Mendes) who is underutilized as the bride, and never gets to have a moment (one funny, bloody one, but otherwise no opportunity to shine).


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