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Movie Review: 'Mr. Nobody'

Updated on November 5, 2019
tamarawilhite profile image

Tamara Wilhite is a technical writer, an industrial engineer, a mother of two, and a published sci-fi and horror author.


Mr. Nobody is a science fiction movie that shows how the butterfly effect impacts one life and, in some ways, the whole world. What are the pros and cons of this what-if movie?

Pros of the Movie “Mr. Nobody”

The movie “Mr. Nobody” has amazing visuals. One of its weaknesses is spending so much time on the visuals relative to the plot.

The movie Mr. Nobody show clearly what his choices were and which ways his life could have gone as a result of each option early on, making it easier to keep up with the various alternating timelines through the rest of the movie.

The movie does a decent job explaining the physics and theories behind the movie itself as well as some of the spiritual views it relies on. The lonely physicist TV show host character seems modeled off Carl Sagan. The movie telegraphs his ability to predict the future with multiple examples, as well.

Random interactions and decisions can radically change your life, regardless of the age you are when you make them. This is one of the few movies that realistically shows the impact of who you choose to spend time with affecting the rest of one’s life.

There are touches of ironic humor like Mr. Nobody setting fire to his car to satisfy depressed Elise and reminiscing on the similarity of its appearance to the timeline containing the same wife dying in a fire shortly after their wedding. Then there's the timeline where he tries to escape his life by taking on another's identity and dies in the process.

The main character’s efforts, trying to escape from his boring life and comatose / frozen state by retreating to sci-fi stories, give Nemo Nobody a rich inner life.

The soundtrack of this movie is excellent.

Mr. Nobody starts off as a personal history of an anmesiac and ends as a metaphysical exploration.
Mr. Nobody starts off as a personal history of an anmesiac and ends as a metaphysical exploration. | Source

Cons of the Movie “Mr. Nobody”

They could have shaved 30 minutes of visuals and repetitive scenes out of the director’s cut of Mr. Nobody. The repetition intended to draw you in emotionally became boring at points.

The mediocre CGI intended to show people behind the scenes creating and remaking the world as he shifts between his timelines are a distraction, not an enhancement.

Observations about Mr. Nobody

Nemo means "nobody" in Latin, so the main character's name is literally no one, no one.

A world with immortality would reasonably limit or stop reproduction, but that doesn’t mean it would end sex as this movie predicts.

There are many simulated sex scenes. This movie isn’t appropriate for children or most young adults.

The conversation between the earlier and later versions of the Nemo character reminds me of the scripted conversation between Dr. Who and other characters in the “Blink” episode.

The movie isn’t clear if the main character, Nemo Nobody, went to Mars in one of his timelines or if that’s one of his stories.


I give “Mr. Nobody” three stars. It is a thought provoking but slow movie with touches of humor and insight. If it had been shorter and thus more engaging, I would have rated it higher.


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