Synchronic (2019) – Movie Review
23rd June 2021 Written by Peter Walkden
Set in the city of New Orleans, the film introduces us to two paramedics who are also close friends. Steve (Anthony Mackie) & Dennis (James Dornan) are well known for working consistently, especially during the late nights. However, the two start getting callouts to some very unusual deaths, which appear to be linked to a substance/drug that takes people on a very odd path where they encounter things, not from this world.
After a couple of encounters, Steve begins his investigation behind the scenes. He makes more extensive discoveries about how the drug, Synchronic, came to be, including who made it and where it is sold. At the same time as making enquiries and learning how this drug is connected to a series of deaths, the tight friendship between Steve and Dennis begins to get tested as doubts and concerns grow between them. Steve also makes a haunting discovery about his health, which pushes him to make wilder choices with his Synchronic investigation.
As far as pacing goes, Synchronic certainly takes a little while to get going. That being said, once major reveals are introduced, I found myself being instead invested in both the story and its characters. The film begins with many questions and unknowns, which was a nice touch too. The thriller aspect overall feels fresh and somewhat different.
Visually, Synchronic is dark and gritty, but it suits the film’s tone and style. Whenever someone on screen takes a dose of Synchronic, audiences enter a world that is either slightly concerning or rather fantastic to see. I like that we get to see what characters see and experience what they experience whenever the drug is in use.
For the most part, characters on screen are likeable, including the lead character Steve, played by Anthony Mackie. The side performance from James Dornan is also satisfactory, but his character is generally filled with continual complaining or whinging about his personal life. But whenever the two are on-screen, it is pleasing to see them interact, and it’s believable that these two leads are good friends and have been for some time. Any complaints I have for this film relates to minor elements such as the film’s story, which has some questionable elements. The film’s last and final moments I also found slightly disappointing as they felt rushed and uncomfortable.
Overall, I quite enjoyed this thriller. While the film takes a little longer to get into the swing of things, Synchronic delivers a dark, gritty, and yet fascinating story. Performances from Anthony Mackie are pleasing and positive. In addition, the film is visually enjoyable as its audience will go on an unexpected journey that had my attention for the entire duration of the film. Lovers of fantasy, thrillers and sci-fi should undoubtedly check this title out.
Synchronic (2019) is Now Available on Blu-ray & DVD!