A film written in “child” should not be criticized by adults who do not speak the language. This is not your typical Disney standard of film release. At the same time, when watched with my two daughters, this adult saw a truth in it, a juvenile purity. Evil fights to dominate Good. Who wins? Um, most of us speak Disney but this one speaks in child first and foremost.
A Wrinkle in Time (2018)
PG | 1h 49min | Adventure, Family, Fantasy | 9 March 2018 (USA)
After the disappearance of her scientist father, three peculiar beings send Meg, her brother, and her friend to space in order to find him.
Director: Ava DuVernay
Writers: Jennifer Lee (screenplay by), Jeff Stockwell (screenplay by) | 1 more credit »
Stars: Storm Reid, Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon
The first love of most kids, after mom, up to the tween ages is their father, whether he was around or not. Storm Reid’s character and her brother lose their father. Right away you have most kids hooked in. Will she find him? Where has he gone? Does he still love the family? Would he want to be found. The director focuses on these particular questions. I would argue it’s to engage the children and tweens in the audience. Chris Pine plays the father and he does a great job of acting. Most the performances are wooden and almost inaccessible but not his, he delivered.
Children often feel trapped in their families. They can’t drive, they can’t choose where to go every day. They are held by their families. Most children dream of being swept away by a mythical savior presence with their well being in mind. That would be Reese Witherspoon’s character. I think they call her a witch but I don’t recall. She is a ditz. She falls into the character she played in “Legally Blonde” more than once. It’s off-putting at best. She was poorly cast in her role. But the kids eat her up. They all want to be taken away from their mother so they can soar through the galaxy in search of dad. Hmmm. Sounds like a bleak plot, but that’s what it is. Summon your inner child and it actually kind of works though.
There is a quote witch and a giant witch. Zach Galafinakis plays a Zen warlock (I assume he’s something like that) who says something really cool (I’m being serious): paraphrased:
“It’s okay to fear the answers but you can never escape them.” – The Happy Medium in A Wrinkle in Time
I took this as it’s better to seek the answers rather than hide in ignorance.
There are amazing backgrounds and colors in this movie. There are also euphoric sound effects and songs. At times it equals the running waters over rocks at the local Massage Envy lobby. Ultimately, there is a battle and there is a victor. I’ll leave the revelation to you. I must say as I close that my daughters loved the filmed and thanked me all the way home for taking them. Maybe those kid brains know something about enjoying films that we don’t? This was a film you must see as a kid and if you can bring a kid to see. As an adult critic, I wouldn’t praise it but for what it is, I give it a 7/10. In an upcoming Talking Stars show I’ll be elaborating more in a conversation so if you’re interested. Please tune in.