For a cinematic concept as limitless as the time loop, The Map of Tiny Perfect Things is sadly confined by a weak sense of direction. I have no doubt that the short story that inspired this feature length movie of the same name is a very moving story and there are bits of the movie that are just as well but overall it has all the feels of a typical low budget straight to VOD movie. The acting is adequate, the coastal Alabama location feels nice and homey and it maintains a very charming and melancholic tone despite the actual time loop aiming low and existing too loosely. The idea found within the time loop though is most admirable. Just as the title states, what I like the most is the map of the tiny perfect things.
Each of our lives are composed of these things, things that have already become a part of our existence and things that have yet to happen. Moments that lead to memories and while they can vary in size of significance to us, we often take for granted or glance over the tiny perfect things in our lives. We all have our version and we often even share bits of our existential maps with others. Well what if you had all the time in the world to maximize your life experience and never miss another tiny nugget of perfection in the never ending stream of time, well this map helps lay it all out in one place, literally. It’s a good thing the movie is about the tiny perfect things and not bigger ideas which again makes me suspect filmmaking constraints. While it’s a nice concept, you may find yourself on either side of the fence. Should life be about checking off every possibly experience like some bucket list, or should it come naturally without any full control.
While it’s theorized in the movie, these perfect things may not actually form some 4-dimension shape in a literal sense or even solve our biggest problems like breaking out of some time loop for example, but the best thing going for Ian Samuels movie is the idea of this map even if it’s not a perfect representation of such an idea. We all have this existential collection that continually shapes our lives even after we break free of this physical existence at the end of our life times.