[Atlanta Film Festival] Melocotones AKA Peaches (2017) - Reviewed

Melocotones screened at ATLFF

The time loop plot device has become popular as of late with the recent horror films Happy Death Day and The Campus, as well as the Netflix comedy When We First Met. Now you can also add the Dominican Republic fantasy romance comedy Melocotones AKA Peaches to the list, which is based on the 2014 Australian film The Infinite Man

It’s a rather odd and unique take on time travel and time loops that has a certain ‘80s flare to it, mashing together the likes of Groundhog Day, Weird Science, and the retrofuturistic worlds of Turbo Kid and Kung Fury. Featuring outstanding camerawork and a beautiful visual color palette, some hilarious fake commercials, and terrific performances from the small cast, Melocotones is a quirky romp that contains more than enough laugh out loud moments to make it worthwhile.

Set in the retrofuture where Emmet Industries produces cutting edge technology, Diego attempts to salvage his relationship with his girlfriend Laura by recreating the vacation they had when they were a happy couple. When Laura’s ex-boyfriend shows up and things don’t go as Diego had planned, he builds a time machine to fix what happened. This also doesn’t go as planned when Diego accidentally traps himself and Laura in a time loop, pitting him against multiple versions of himself and Laura’s ex-boyfriend. Having not seen The Infinite Man, I cannot say how similar Melocotones is to its source material. Judging from the images and synopsis online, it has a similar retrofuturistic look to it but does appear to slightly diverge from the original story. There is a dark comedic undertone to the film, mainly from the Emmet Industries commercials, but it never really gets overly dark and opts for a more comedic approach ripe with sexual themes and adult humor.

Melocotones has a distinct and gorgeous visual style, blending blues and oranges on the characters and props with the brown earthy tones of their barren and dusty surroundings. The deserted vacation town has the look and feel of the wild west, closely resembling the style of the spaghetti westerns from the ‘70s. Even though it occurs mostly in the same location, it’s still a beautiful looking production with interesting angles and movement, and superb cinematography. It features a dreamy pop score that seems to attempt to recreate popular songs from the ‘80s. The set design and props add to the ‘80s vibe, complete with floppy discs, extremely large computer hardware, and Swiss army style prehistoric looking phones that serve multiple functions.

Asides from the commercials for Emmet Industries, the bulk of the film consists of only three actors. Luckily, all three deliver terrific performances. Peter Vives plays Diego, the hapless romantic who will do anything to win back the love of Laura. Joaquín Ferreira is excellent as the alpha male ex-boyfriend Sandro, looking to steal back his former flame from the obsessive tech geek with the use of his sexual prowess. María Guinea takes on the role of the straight woman in this movie, allowing the two male characters to perform a mixture of slapstick and physical comedy as they encounter multiple versions of themselves.

Overall, Melocotones is a fun and entertaining take on the time loop theme. While it may echo Groundhog Day too much for some viewers, it should appeal to anyone looking for a light and quirky ‘80s take on time travel and time loops.

Share this review.

-Raul Vantassle