Miranda July's The Future Explores Relationships, Responsibility and Time

By , Contributor

Performance artist, writer, and filmmaker Miranda July will release her second feature on July 29. Titled The Future, the film garnered some positive press when it screened at Sundance this year.

The Future concerns Sophie and Jason, a couple in their mid-30s (played by July and Hamish Linklater, whom TV viewers will recognize from his turn as Julia Louis-Dreyfus's long-suffering brother in The New Adventures of Old Christine) who commit to adopting a cat in need of medical care.

The cat (aptly named Paw-Paw) has an injured paw and won't be able to join his new owners for 30 days while he completes his recuperation. In the interim, Sophie and Jason decide to fulfill some of their unspoken and unfulfilled dreams before their lives are taken over by the burdens of commitment and responsibility. July sidesteps a conventional narrative in favor of magical realism (the film is narrated by Paw-Paw, and as events unfold Jason demonstrates an ability to stop time) as she explores her themes.

Asked to sum up the film in a recent interview in the Los Angeles Times, July said, "The first one, I didn't have a great time describing that one either. In fact I mostly just started repeating what everyone else said ... So I'm kind of waiting for that on this one, to get a consensus. Essentially every time I'm trying to make something about things that are hard to put into words, like the feelings that slip between the cracks. So I feel it's a good sign for me personally if I don't have the words because that's why I made the movie."

In addition to her feature length films (her first, in 2005, was Me And You And Everyone We Know), July has made several short films, has published a book of short stories (No One Belongs Here More Than You) in addition to having been published in several literary magazines and anthologies, and is a performance artist whose works have been presented at The Whitney Museum in New York and The Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, among others.

You can find out more (maybe) at the film's enigmatic website, learn more about Miranda July at her website, or watch a trailer for The Future right here:

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Lisa McKay is the executive editor at The Morton Report.

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