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Palm Springs

by Michael McDevit
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Palm Springs is a 2020 American romantic comedy film directed by Max Barbakow (in his directorial debut) and written by Andy Siara. It stars Andy Samberg, Cristin Milioti, Peter Gallagher, and J. K. Simmons, and follows two strangers who meet at a Palm Springs wedding only to get stuck in a time loop.

The film had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival on January 26, 2020, and was released in limited theaters by Neon and digitally on Hulu on July 10, 2020. It received positive reviews from critics, with praise for the performances and use of the concept.


How we got to be, where we got to be……..

On November 9, Nyles wakes up next to his girlfriend Misty on the wedding day of Tala and Abe. At the reception, he delivers a seemingly impromptu speech, to the relief of the drunk and unprepared maid of honor Sarah. The two bond and, after discovering Misty cheating on Nyles, begin to have sex until Nyles is abruptly shot in the shoulder with an arrow by an older man named Roy. Wounded, he crawls towards a mysterious red light in a nearby cave, and warns Sarah not to follow. Sarah, curious, is sucked into a vortex in the cave.

Sarah wakes up on November 9. After she confronts Nyles, he explains that she is now stuck in the same time loop as him. Sarah unsuccessfully attempts many escape methods, such as driving to her hometown or suicide. Nyles and Sarah spend many days together, often relaxing in the pool of a vacationing family. Nyles reveals Roy is a family man who lives in Irvine whom Nyles also trapped in the time loop after a night of partying, and who sometimes comes to Palm Springs to hunt Nyles and “get revenge”. After many more loops, Nyles and Sarah camp out in the desert, and eventually have sex. The next day, Sarah is woken up by Abe, having spent the night of November 8 together. A guilt-ridden Sarah refuses to talk about the previous night and expresses that everything they do is meaningless to a confused Nyles. They are soon pulled over by a police officer, who turns out to be Roy. Sarah runs over Roy in his police car, and Nyles reveals that he has slept with Sarah numerous times, something that he previously lied about. A disgusted Sarah runs in front of an incoming truck to kill herself and restart the day.

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