It’s been a long time since I watched a movie that was rated PG. Before I get into it with A Wrinkle In Time, I should first disclose that I’ve never read the book. I don’t know what I was reading instead back then, because everyone I know seems to have read it when they were a kid. It was probably that book I read in elementary school about the kid who got meningitis and died. Yes. I’ve had a lifelong fear of meningitis thanks to that book.
So, anyway… my first thought upon completion of A Wrinkle In Time is that I just watched a PG-rated, fantasy-based version of Interstellar. That’s right. Christopher Nolan ripped off Madeleine L’Engle. I see what you did there, Chris. I’ve got my eye on you. For my money, this movie is better than Insterstellar, though, because it doesn’t try nearly as hard to ground it all in hard science. The fact that A Wrinkle In Time is getting such mixed reviews when Interstellar has a huge contingent of fanboys absolutely floors me.
The stand out part of this movie is certainly its direction, which should come as no surprise with Ava DuVernay at the helm. I don’t usually even notice the way a movie is shot, but this one is gorgeous through and through, with a lot of provocative angles and framing that serves the story well. Although it is certainly not a perfect movie, it is without a doubt a very pretty movie.
It’s also entirely designed to lay on the emotion and tug at your heart strings, which it only manages to do occasionally, and generally in the least likely parts of the story. I’m not entirely sure why the emotion missed sometimes, but I think the fact that the acting was relatively uneven didn’t help matters. With the exception of Chris Pine and Reese Witherspoon, I don’t think any of the actors in the movie delivered at their best. I was especially surprised that Oprah Winfrey was the one of the weakest points of the cast.
The special effects were adequate for the story that was being told, and reminded me a little bit of Tomorrowland in its aesthetic (highly underrated movie, btw). I certainly never thought that Reese Witherspoon would be equally pretty as a flying cabbage… if that’s what she was. I’m not really sure. Maybe someone who read the book can tell me what manner of garden vegetable she’s supposed to be.
This movie isn’t perfect. I’m unlikely to ever feel the need to watch it again, and I can’t imagine that it will be given any awards, but I enjoyed my two hours at the theater with it and it is absolutely better than the abysmal reviews it’s getting from critics and audiences. I’d like to see a bunch of reviews written by 8 to 12 year olds, personally. I think this movie is really for that demographic, and I can imagine loving this when I was younger in the same way that I loved The Neverending Story, though I do think parts of the movie may be frightening for some children.
Should you go watch A Wrinkle in Time? I can’t say it’s a must-watch, but if you loved the book as a child, you have children of the proper age, or you just like going to the movies, I don’t think you’ll regret your decision to spend money watching it. Also, if you liked Interstellar and you don’t like this, then we should talk, because I don’t understand what’s wrong with you… actually, I don’t know what’s wrong with you if you liked Interstellar at all.