Thanks to Walt Disney Australia we had the chance to see Ava DuVernay‘s directorial debut ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ before its cinematic release. This is our review of the film, but – as usual – no matter what we say, we recommend that you still go to your local cinema and see the film because there is no better critic than yourself!
When watching kids’ movies as an adult it’s important to bear in mind that you are not the intended audience. That said, there are plenty of children’s movies that are great fun for adults too. Sadly, A Wrinkle in Time just isn’t one of them.
Meg Murry (Storm Reid) is the daughter of Doctors Kate (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) and Alexander Murry (Chris Pine), the latter of whom goes missing while trying to find a way to fold time and space. She’s a taciturn girl, and an outcast at school, getting into fights with her bullies. Her little brother, Charles Wallace (Deric McCabe), is apparently something of a prodigy, although it’s hard to understand his speech. They meet up with three eccentrically-attired women: Mrs Whatsit (Reese Witherspoon), Mrs Who (Mindy Kaling) and Mrs Which (Oprah Winfrey), who tell her that her father’s theories were right and they can cross space and time to search for him. They travel to some alien worlds, meet Zach Galifianakis, and then confront an evil entity called The IT before finding their father and bringing him home.
The film is luxuriously paced. Visually it’s certainly very colourful. And it’s unendurably awful.
It trades some of the scientific concepts the book explored for more emotional, “inspirational” themes, shortchanging its intended audience.
The script is a mishmash of cliche, delivered by what appears to be range of text-to-speech robots. The child cast is insufferable, especially young Charles Wallace, who fires out his lines like an extremely irritating machine gun. You’ll remember his name because nearly half the script is the rest of the cast shouting it.
I’m rarely angered by a film, but this movie is nails down a cinematic chalkboard, complete with saccharine, inappropriate pop song montages.