So Wizard HQ was contacted by Alexander Cooper. The producer/actor of Parallel brought the independent sci-fi movie to our attention. Eager to check it out we were lucky enough to score an online screener.
Heather (Faye Sewell), a young professional is set up with Neil (David Magowan) at a party. The two hit it off immediately. Before too long the two are in love, or verging on it. Heather thinks it’s the real deal but wants to really know.
A chance encounter between Heather and an unassuming man called Machlis (Brian Carter) changes everything in ways Heather nor Neil could have ever guessed.
Machlis professes himself a psychic of sorts. He is completely up front about his ‘gift’ and understands all the skepticism that goes along with it. Despite doing a pretty good job to keep them away, Heather is intrigued by the man and insists on a visit.
The psychic visit gives the couple a look into their lives in a parallel universe. The all-too-real feeling of it worms into each of their minds and begins to occupy themselves in their own reality.
A pretty clever script and nicely executed. Parallel plays out like an old Twilight Zone episode. The plot doesn’t take long to get going, the story never stops, all the pieces of the puzzle are right before your eyes but only become apparent on the reveal. The ‘a-ha’ moments are exciting and the ending, while somewhat abrupt in feel, has an appropriate poetry to it.
The acting in the movie was pretty good. A few lines fell flat here or there but nothing came across as wooden. Setting up the story was well crafted and Brian Carter, who had the bulk of what could be considered exposition, sold it well. The banter between the characters is fun, natural, and never deviates into questionable. The relationship between leads Heather and Neil isn’t given a ton of screen time but the actors sell it with their familiarity.
A few scenes in the movie feel hollow. That’s really the only word for it. Not in content but in the physicality of it. It’s not readily apparent why as the video quality is good, extras are placed where needed, and the locations look real and not like sound stages.
The only real complaint with the technical side of the movie is the sound editing. The score is absent throughout the majority of the movie. That’s fine. Artistic choice. But when the score is implemented it’s way too loud and drowns out the dialogue. The dialogue also does funny things with a surround sound set up at times as the voices jump across the room.
These small shortcomings won’t ruin the experience of the movie for you. The concept and script are strong enough to hold the attention of any sci-fi fan. Add in a couple possible explanations for the audience to mull over and Parallel is really enjoyable.
Parallel is available to stream through Amazon. Use our link to support independent entertainment in two ways!