Synchronic is the type of film (a horror sci-fi drama) that I would have likely skipped if not for the appeal of its two stars Anthony Mackie and Jamie Dornan. I’d never heard of the filmmaking team of “Moorhead & Benson” (aka Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead) who apparently made a name for themselves with films described as “quietly mythic.” I wasn’t sure what that meant, until now. Synchronic certainly fits that bill. And, to my surprise, I rather liked it – especially the second half, which is dominated by Mackie’s performance. He plays Steve, a terminally-ill paramedic who takes a mysterious hallucinogenic drug in the hopes it will help him find/rescue the missing daughter of his partner and longtime best friend Dennis (Dornan). It’s a high-concept mindbender shot with a total independent film vibe, brimming with atmosphere.
The first half focuses on the set-up of Steve and Dennis as New Orleans paramedics called to a series of bizarre, gruesome attacks thought to be tied to a new synthetic party drug found at the scene. But this psychedelic drug, Synchronic, is beyond trippy. It messes with reality and the flow of time itself.
I’ll leave it at that, because the trippy trip is best experienced with minimal external influence and forethought.
Synchronic hits select theaters and drive-ins on October 23rd. It could make for a uniquely satisfying drive-in experience if distractions are kept to a minimum. Otherwise, file it in the back of your mind for when it is released as a streaming/On Demand option.