What is 65 Even About? Attempting to Explain the Adam Driver vs. Dinosaurs Movie
Wait, is Adam Driver an alien?
65, the newest film from writer-director duo Scott Beck and Bryan Woods (Haunt) is finally roaring into theaters. But with its vague title (65 what?!) and mysterious setting, you’d be forgiven for having no idea what it’s about.
The Adam Driver-starring thriller is an efficiently told sci-fi yarn about a pilot with futuristic technology trying to save one young passenger from their crash on a planet full of, well, dinosaurs. But if this premise makes you think this is a new-age spin on Planet of the Apes, you’d be dead wrong.
There’s more than a little confusion around some of the movie’s central plot elements, so here’s a brief (largely spoiler-free) explainer of what you should know about 65.
What the heck does 65 even mean?
This one’s the easiest. The title 65 signifies 65 million years ago, the era of the film’s setting, and most of it takes place on Mesozoic-era Earth.
65 million years ago? Is this a time travel movie?
This seems to be a point of confusion, as humanoids with sci-fi tech typically scream “from the future!” Our heroes are actually from far, far in the past.
There’s literally no suggestion of time travel in 65 (recently confirmed by Adam Driver), even of the accidental Planet of the Apes variety. Their advanced extraterrestrial civilization existed 65 million years ago, it was just more technologically advanced than we are. Driver explains that the characters are in a “parallel universe,” but you should probably forget that — it’s not needed to understand the film.
Wait, Adam Driver’s playing an alien?
Yep, Mills (Adam Driver) and young passenger Koa (Ariana Greenblatt) are both extraterrestrials. Mills is from a planet called Somaris, and Koa is from elsewhere in his space-faring civilization.
65’s intro title cards confirm that “before the advent of mankind … a visitor crash landed on Earth,” so it’s clear that the pair are aliens, just humanoid ones.
Why does Mills have an Earth name and seemingly speak English? Not clear. Maybe both our planet and theirs evolved the name Mills in the same way the Earth keeps independently making crabs. He’s definitely never stepped foot on Earth prior to the movie, and it’s best to think of them as aliens that really look like us, but which aren’t connected to humanity beyond their fateful crash in our galactic neighborhood.
So why are they traveling through space?
Your usual space travel reasons. Mills agreed to pilot the long interstellar voyage in order to make enough money for the healthcare of his ill daughter on Somaris. Koa was traveling with her family, who were lost in the crash.
Why can’t we understand what Koa is saying? What language is that?
One from within the boundaries of their extraterrestrial civilization, but it’s a working language that was invented for the movie. It’s not an Earth language, we’re not supposed to understand it, and Mills can’t speak it either. That said, if you really, really wanted to translate it, it’s not gibberish: you might be able to!
Who is the “bad guy” in 65? Is it an evil dinosaur?
There’s no Chris-Pratt-in-Passengers humanoid villain, no: it’s a simple survival tale, where the main antagonist is mostly the comet, somewhat the dinosaurs. In a way, it’s also Somaris’ for-profit healthcare system, which is why Mills took on the trip to begin with. Is it somewhat soul crushing that a high-tech spacefaring civilization still has bottom-barrel capitalist healthcare? Yes, yes it is.
What’s up with that time-lapse ending? What does it mean?!
There’s definitely credits footage worth watching, but it’s not a sequel tease. As the credits roll, there’s a time lapse of the area where the comet struck the Earth. We watch the progression through the planet’s recovery into the modern skyscraper era. That’s it.
The time lapse does not mean Adam Driver travels to the future. It’s just a pretty cool shot — even if it might have been badass to see Future Us hit the stars in a perfect moment of circularity. That said, realistically it would double the confusion people have, and this article would need to be SO MUCH LONGER, so perhaps it’s for the best.