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River (2023) – English Review

People in a small inn are trapped in a two-minute time loop. Will they manage to get out of the time loop before they go completely insane?

River is directed by the same director who made another time-travel movie, Before the Infinite Two Minutes (2020). The man is obsessed with two minutes! Does that mean that he is the two-minute man in bed also?

Why in God’s name did I say that? What’s wrong with me? Damn those Category III movies from Hong Kong. I need to stop watching them.

Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes was a decent movie, but I have to say that River is way better than the director’s directorial debut. The reason for that is that the actors are better and way more charming than the ones we follow in his first movie.

Many of the same actors from Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes are back, but the script feels tighter and more clever so their chemistry feels more natural in River. But there are some early scenes that feel unnatural when they are talking, but that disappears pretty quickly when the fun begins. They seem more relaxed this time, and that helps a lot when watching the movie as they take you on a fun ride with the two-minute time loop.

I loved the protagonist in the movie and the actress who plays her, Riko Fujitani. She is so cute and goofy, and she is so much fun to follow around when she and the other people who work at the inn are trying to find a way out of the time loop. She can’t be more innocent, which makes her so fun to follow.

I’m not going to spend time on the plot since this is a short movie that has a simple love story and simple characters that lack character depth. The reason you watch this movie is to see how the characters are dealing with the situation since they start at the beginning after every two minutes have passed. That makes it fun, and one after the other is starting to lose it. But since this is a charming and innocent movie, you hope for the best and you expect that the director will in the end keep them safe when they find the solution to stop the time loop.

If you liked Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes, I strongly recommend River. It’s a better movie in every aspect, and it’s a true Groundhog Day copy with that special Japanese charm that we all come to love, right?

Rating: 9/10

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