Palm Springs is fantastic. That’s it! What more needs to be said? Obviously, quite a bit more. However, facts are facts. The darling of this year’s Sundance film festival isn’t some flash in the pan. Writer Andy Siara has taken this broad science fiction centric concept of a time loop and used it as a framework for a hilarious yet touching tale about our purpose in life. Palm Springs asks audiences what they would do if there’s no tomorrow because today is infinite. Would you attempt to be the best version of yourself or just let it rip?
Palm Springs centers around a wedding in which Nyles (Andy Samberg) and Sarah (Cristin Milioti) are attending. Nyles immediately stands out in this sea of appropriately dressed men and women. Sarah is the most reluctant Maid-of-Honor in the history of weddings. These two have a chance encounter, which results in them not being able to escape themselves as they relive the same day over and over.
Samberg and Milioti’s chemistry in the film is terrific. Samberg’s character has resigned himself that he’s stuck in this loop forever and given up hope. He begins to change when Sarah enters his world. Nyles figures that if he has to be stuck in this day forever, he has someone to do that with. Comfort begins to morph into care when he sees Milioti’s character for who she is. While her family has dismissed Sarah as an embarrassment, Nyles sees a very kind and sweet person. To me, Palm Springs is more about Sarah than it is anyone else.
Instead of watching each day pass by only to reset, Milioti’s character attempts to better herself and get out of this time-loop. This action catches Nyles off guard, but he quickly begins to find it refreshing. Even when she reaches her lowest point in the film, she sees it as a reset. Samberg’s character doesn’t come around to that perspective until the tail end of the book.