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‘Palm Springs’ Starring Andy Samberg Is the Best New Rom-Com in Years—and Surprisingly Timely

‘Palm Springs’ Starring Andy Samberg Is the Best New Rom-Com in Years—and Surprisingly Timely

Palm Springs might be all about losing yourself in an infinite time loop, but it doesn’t waste a second.

The indie Andy Samberg rom-com, which debuts on Hulu Friday after its January premiere at Sundance Film Festival, plunks an extremely likable cast—Samberg, Cristin Milioti, J.K. Simmons—into a cocktail mixer and shakes them together in a wedding-inflected Groundhog Day gambit. The end result could have been lazy, resting on the charisma of its cast and the trendiness of time loops. But thankfully for us, this is not that movie; this one is deceptively empathetic and even stirring—and it all unfolds with crisp writing that never lingers anywhere too long.

Things start out ordinarily enough—with Samberg’s character, Nyles, waking up the day of the wedding and having stunted, sweatless sex with a girlfriend he now only tolerates. For a while, you might get whiffs of Forgetting Sarah Marshall, which also juxtaposed its central characters’ decrepit (or in that case dead) romance against blindingly sunny environs. But that night at the wedding, Nyles starts chatting up the maid of honor, Sarah (Milioti). And that’s when things get… weird.

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