57 Seconds is a story of the pharmaceutical giants ruling the world. What people are most interested in is the amalgamation of technology and health. With this backdrop and a man’s hunger for revenge, we get the plot of 57 seconds.
The film starts with a private plane in which several people are seated. Franklin (played by Josh Hutcherson), the lead character says that everyone on that plane is about to die. The man seated across him on that plane is Sig Thorenson, the owner of a pharmaceutical company that flooded the market with a lethal and addictive drug that caused the death of thousands. We’re taken back to what started three months ago.
Franklin runs a blog about achieving optimal health. He took the gig of a ticket taker at the Sci-Trinity area to interview Anton Burrell (Morgan Freeman). Anton is a health and tech guru and claims to be close to a very big discovery.
Franklin saved Anton’s life by stopping the attacker who entered forcibly on the premises. After this incident, Franklin found the ring that could take you back in time by 57 seconds thus, the title. The blogger with the help of the ring expanded his financial resources and now has a girlfriend, Jala. His twin sister was killed by a drug addiction, the same was manufactured by Sig Thorenson’s company. He now aims to get his revenge and expose the company’s dirty secrets.
Superficially, the film can be divided into three phases. The first one is when Franklin had no idea what to do with his life was a penniless man and had no personal life. This is the part that has been wrapped up speedily.
Then is the second phase in which he discovers the rings and makes a fortune using them. The carelessness with which he was using the ring can’t be described. Maybe Franklin was overwhelmed with the idea of winning a lot of money at the casino and finally living the life that he always wanted, but in that process, he forgot how it could put a target behind his back. It can be described as the most reckless phase of his life where he got blinded by money and success.
The third phase is when his eyes finally open up, and he sets back on the path to revenge. This is the phase when we get the same old speech about how technology can be addictive just like painkillers are to a patient.
The second phase is over-extended when it could’ve been wrapped short. Although the film is just 87 minutes long (without credits), it could’ve done a better job at time management. Not much had been told about Franklin’s life before coming across the time travel ring. If this had been done, the audience would have seen the difference that technology makes. Even if it was negative then there would have been something available to compare it with and the message delivered at the end would be much clearer.
The ending of the film was no surprise at all as it’s something that time travel films and series have shown repeatedly. Remember how time travel plots used to end, with the person realizing that this is wrong and it could do more harm than good? The same happens with Franklin, the guinea pig of Anton Burrell.
A major focus is on the pharmaceutical giant and how he and Franklin were enemies with the friendship and partnership mask on. Also, why would Anton think that Franklin deserves to be his partner? He did everything a greedy man would do. Some would counter-reply that he was the one with morals then, he had forgotten all of them until he broke up with Jala. This was when it hit him that he had deviated from the path he had chosen.
This film has a very basic plot. In my opinion, it was one of the half-baked projects that ran out of its budget and had to be made in haste. With a basic plotline like this, wonders could have been done. What we’re fed with is poor character development and a story that went underutilized.
As this is a time travel story, the addition of better effects and some cool beats could have come in handy. The talent Morgan Freeman and Josh Hutcherson hold has been severely underutilized. 57 Seconds is something that doesn’t require much attention and if you want to watch good sci-fi content, then some other projects are worthy of your attention.
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