An admirably complex tale of time travel, corporate espionage and high emotions you'll just have to take everyone's word on, Jacob Gentry's science-fiction puzzler Synchronicity is so ambitious -- and so canny, on occasion -- that you might be willing to forgive its indie infelicities. The acting is iffy, especially when the time-traveling hero comes to love the femme fatale he's just met. It's impressive, at first, how much future-lab excitement Gentry and his production team whip up on the cheap, suggesting complex machinery and procedures on sets swathed in fog, bathed in white light. They merely tease the particulars, inviting us to imagine along, but at some point you'll probably ask, "Hey, why are most rooms in this future built around slowly churning industrial fans?"
Repetitive set dressing might be thematic. Synchronicity returns again and again to its key early scene in which inventor Jim (Chad McKnight) tests his time machine. The results prove inconclusive -- but, wait, why is there suddenly a glassed dahlia in the room? And who is that mysterious beauty, Abby (Brianne Davis), who's hanging out near the lab? More pressing: Why does Jim immediately spirit that out-of-nowhere beauty with him to a tense and highly secret dinner negotiation with his devious financial backer?
Initially, the film seems to truck in quizzical behavior and daft coincidences, but you should quickly gather that you'll be seeing all this again later, as time travelers dash about manipulating the past. But Synchronicity isn't accomplished enough for those hints at timeline interference to play as mysterious. They come across, mostly, as examples of the uncertain filmmaking and storytelling that too often keep this dense, challenging picture from success.