Review: NOTHING REALLY HAPPENS Is Weird, Ambitious, And Nearly Incomprehensible


One can't fault it for lack of ambition, but Nothing Really Happens simply doesn't come together into a satisfying (or understandable) whole.
Technical Merit

Nothing Really Happens, written and directed by Justin Petty, is one of the weirdest and most surreal films that you may ever see in your life… but that might not be a good thing. Although this movie is sure to pick up its fair share of fans (and possibly even an eventual cult following), it takes bizarre to a new, almost incomprehensible level.

This film follows the owner of a mattress store who begins to experience anomalies in his life that make him question his reality and strain his relationships with friends and family. Billed as a spin on Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, this movie is similarly odd and also has a lot on its mind, but it fails to deliver that commentary effectively because it lacks the heart that made the aforementioned film work so well.

Another reason why Nothing Really Happens falls apart is that it does not explain its mythology well enough. Although the movie seems to be trying to keep the audience in the dark about what is really happening (maybe nothing?) for a majority of its runtime, when it is finally explained, it feels underbaked and unsatisfying, and as a result, the film doesn’t really earn its comparisons to Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

The humor is also somewhat frustrating. Although there are a handful of funny moments in the movie, those come early on and the same gags are just repeated over and over again. While the film does succeed in using this to make you feel uncomfortable, it isn’t enjoyable by any means. This movie’s sense of humor is the very definition of one-note, and it gets very old really quickly.

nothing really happens aquarium

Also disappointing is the film’s character development. The protagonist is the only character who is given a legitimate personality. All of the supporting characters feel flat and archetypal. However, even the protagonist has very little with which we can sympathize. The only element of his story that is particularly compelling is his experience with the mattress store, but unfortunately, that is played off as nothing more than a joke.

The lead actor, Adam Edwards, is actually quite talented. It’s just a shame that his talent is put to waste in a movie that makes very little sense. Edwards seems perfectly cast in a role in which he is spiraling into insanity. What makes his performance even more impressive is that this is his first role. He has a lot of charm and a natural on-screen presence. Maybe he has a future as an actor in psychological horror films.

On a technical level, the movie is definitely ambitious, especially for an independent production. The primary function of the visuals and soundtrack seems to be to disorient the audience, and in this regard, it is a rousing success. That said, the film does go beyond disorientation a few times and becomes headache-inducing, which is never a fun time.

Some people may think that Nothing Really Happens is brilliant if they are able to decipher it. Most audiences will see it for what it is, though, a confusing but ambitious sci-fi movie that could have used a lot more streamlining and polish to be what it wanted to be.

Nothing Really Happens is now available on VOD.


Morbius | Teaser Trailer | Reaction

Ashley reacts to and discusses the Morbius teaser trailer. ORIGINAL VIDEO: Share your thoughts about the trailer in the comments below. And don't forget to subscribe to Ashley Talks Movies for more reviews and reactions. Other Ways to Follow ►TWITTER: ►LETTERBOXD: Intro / Outro Music: –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– Fresh by Ikson Music promoted…

Our Cartoon President Season 3 (2020) Teaser Trailer | Stephen Colbert SHOWTIME Series

From the Iowa caucuses and the Democratic campaigns to the impeachment inquiry, dive into a momentous election year to explore the critical question of who could be the next Cartoon President. #OurCartoonPresident Subscribe to the SHOWTIME YouTube channel: Don’t have SHOWTIME? Order now: Get Our Cartoon President merchandise now: Get more Our…

Mo’Nique & Friends: Live from Atlanta | Official Teaser | SHOWTIME Comedy

Comedy legend Mo'Nique hosts an amazing night of comedy featuring her friends, who also happen to be amazing comedians. Starring Prince T-Dub, Just Nesh, Tone-X, Correy Bell and Donnell Rawlings. Premieres Friday, February 7 at 10/9c on SHOWTIME. #SHOWTIMEComedy Subscribe to the SHOWTIME channel for more clips: Don’t have SHOWTIME? Order now: Get…

Arrow | Season 8 Episode 8 | Crisis on Infinite Earths: Part Four Scene | The CW

Stream new episodes of Arrow Wednesdays, free only on The CW App: SUBSCRIBE: About ARROW: After a violent shipwreck, billionaire playboy Oliver Queen was missing and presumed dead for five years before being discovered alive on a remote island in the South China Sea. Oliver returned home to Starling City, bent on righting…

Best Southern Advice from Troop Zero | Prime Video

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever heard? » Watch Troop Zero now exclusively with your Prime membership: » SUBSCRIBE: About Troop Zero: In rural 1977 Georgia, a misfit girl dreams of life in outer space. When a national competition offers her a chance at her dream, to be recorded on NASA’s…

Daryl’s 20 MOST EPIC Saves | The Walking Dead

Watch Daryl's most epic saves in The Walking Dead. Watch Classic Scenes from The Walking Dead: Subscribe to The Walking Dead on YouTube: #TWD #TheWalkingDead #Daryl THE WALKING DEAD: Like The Walking Dead on Facebook: Follow The Walking Dead on Twitter: Visit The Walking Dead Official Site: Sign Up for…

Dynasty | Season 3 Episode 10 | What Sorrows Are You Drowning? Promo | The CW

Stream new episodes of Dynasty Saturdays, free only on The CW App: SUBSCRIBE: About DYNASTY: Fallon Carrington is charismatic, cunning, and poised to become the new COO of her father’s global energy empire – or so she thinks. When her father, Blake Carrington, summons Fallon and her brother, Steven, home in Atlanta, Fallon…

Transporting and Transforming: Costume Designer Ruth E. Carter on DOLEMITE IS MY NAME | Netflix

Eddie Murphy portrays real-life legend Rudy Ray Moore, a comedy and rap pioneer who proved naysayers wrong when his hilarious, obscene, kung-fu fighting alter ego, Dolemite, became a 1970s Blaxploitation phenomenon. From director Craig Brewer; writers Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski; and the producing team John Davis, John Fox and Murphy. Oscar-winning Costume Designer Ruth…
Sean Boelman
Sean is a film student, aspiring filmmaker, and life-long cinephile. For as long as he can remember, he has always loved film, but he credits the film Pan's Labyrinth as having started his love of film as art. Sean enjoys watching many types of films, although some personal favorite genres include dramatic comedies, romantic comedies, heist films, and art horror.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here