A fluffy cat partially narrates this arty domestic drama, and, in a shocking reversal of expectations, that's hardly the most obnoxious thing about it. (A pair of paws can be so expressive.) Rather, turn your attention to the two ostensibly human creatures who are our main characters: Sophie (writer-director July) and Jason (Linklater), both breathers of the indie-chilled, rarified air of quirkland. Lolling in their shabby L.A. apartment, these Fraggle-coiffed 35-year-olds speak in clever ironies, distracted by their laptops. He's a tech-support guy; she's some kind of unsuccessful performance artist. If you actually met them in the real world and endured their pregnant pauses, you'd want to shake them, screaming.
Which is why The Future becomes so unexpectedly moving when it starts poking tears in this couple's paper-fragile existence. For all of her personal investment, July (she made the 2005 oddity Me and You and Everyone We Know) may be growing tired of these people: She throws infidelity, job anxiety and even a sci-fi-like time warp at her childless marrieds, and you begin to see the film for what it is, a eulogy for overextended navet. Composer Jon Brion darkens the tone further with his underwater guitar plodding; the mood of this movie will brew with you for a while, even if it swirls around characters who aren't quite persuasive.
Follow Joshua Rothkopf on Twitter: @joshrothkopf
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