No Momentum for Memento Knockoff Reversion


A conceptual stunt without much substance beneath its initially enticing exterior, Reversion is set in an alterna-L.A. where the population is split between average humans and “mutants” who experience the past, present, and future simultaneously. That mixed-up state of mind is intolerable to sullen, Afro’d Eva (Leslie Silva), who wants to alter her “mishmash” circumstances, but it’s accepted by Marcus (Jason Olive), a hunk whom she meets on the street and is destined to kill. With its handheld-shot contemporary action interrupted by schizo flashes of the before and after, Mia Trachinger’s indie is a low-fi variation on Memento, wrestling with issues of memory, reality, and the battle between predetermination and free will. As the couple squabble, screw, attempt to reach a beach where escape from their situation may be possible, and, finally, try to prevent Eva from shooting Marcus, the film gets bogged down by its romantically doomed protagonists’ one-note brooding over their incapacity to affect fate’s immutable hand. Like many similarly twisty tales, Reversion’s narrative logic is undermined by its characters’ irrational behavior, with Eva and Marcus intentionally carrying out (rather than vigorously trying to prevent) the very acts they know will lead to tragedy. Ultimately just as problematic, though, is a simple lack of momentum or depth.