We need more directors willing to take risks with films like Get Out.
The underlying gimmick of "Nick of Time" will be familiar to anyone who has been unable to avoid the TV commercials. A man is chosen at random, handed a gun, and told that his young daughter will be killed unless he assassinates the governor of California. The fact that former L.A. Mayor Tom Bradley was persuaded to play a cameo in this story movie, and that Gov. Pete Wilson's office is thanked for its cooperation, is more evidence that in Los Angeles everyone wants to be a star.
The movie features Johnny Depp as Watson, an everyman who arrives at the Los Angeles train station with his daughter Lynn (Courtney Chase). Surveying the crowd are Mr. Smith (Christopher Walken) and Ms. Jones (Roma Maffia). They confront Watson, flash badges, tell him he's under arrest, and bundle him and his daughter into a van. Then they explain their plan.
This all takes place shortly after noon. Watson is told he has 90 minutes to make the hit. If he doesn't, his daughter will die. The movie itself clocks in at 104 minutes, but part of that is accounted for by the pre-story and the end credits. The action mirrors the 90-minute time limit so closely that it's a curious sensation, being able to look at the clocks on the screen to tell how much longer the movie has to run.
The governor (Marsha Mason) is spending that part of the day at the Bonaventure Hotel in L.A. Mr. Smith takes Watson there and then follows him to make sure he doesn't try anything funny. We meet a mystery man who seems behind the scheme - a wealthy backer of the governor, who wants revenge because she backed out of promises to him. The millionaire is played by the dependable G. D. Spradlin, as your basic sinister military industrialist.