As an avid reader I’m always weary when my favorite titles are chosen to become visual spectacles for the masses. I worry that the magical worlds I envision will not be recreated with the same majesty. Sometimes the way we imagine things in our heads, will not be related in the same way on the screen. You see, even though technology has come a long way, the human imagination, especially that of your dutify sci fi reader still begs for more. So, going into A Wrinkle in Time, directed by Ava DuVernay, I had very, very high hopes.
Going in I did have to remind myself of a few things: One, this is a children’s movie. This movie is built to empower young minds to “Be Warriors”. It tackles ideas of bullying, fitting in, meeting expectations from parents and teachers, adoption (a theme added to explain the multicultural casting), and that awkward phase of pre-teendom. Two, this is a Disney movie that has been toned down a bit from some of the themes of the book. I actually was a bit disappointed that some of the cultural references that were removed. For instance, all religious connotations have been removed. Still it was cute to hear Mindy Kaling reference rap lyrics. Three, I really think it’s a good idea to have read the book first before seeing this movie.
It is visually beautiful! The acting by the youth actors is wonderful and well executed. I was pleasantly surprised by the comedy of Reese Witherspoon. Her turn as Mrs. Whatsit was comically ridiculous. Zach Galifianakis as The Happy Medium was perfectly cast, his deadpan comedy is always delightful. Oprah was Oprah as expected. The other adults are also well-played but I didn’t really like how they were written. They changed the story of the parents to fit the new narrative and for me this changed the essence of the story too much. I think because they wanted to push the multicultural cast. This added a layer to the story that might not read too much to children watching. However, to me it adds much more to the story than was originally there. Changing the race of the main character gives her even more to have to deal with.
If you have read the book or seen the movie and or both, I’d love to hear your thoughts and get your take. The movie lost points for me because of the ending. I did not like the way they portrayed the father, however Chris Pine’s performance as always was perfection! Overall I would give this movie 3.5 out of 5. A Wrinkle in Time DVD and Blu-ray release date is estimated for June 2018 and available on Digital HD from Amazon Video and iTunes is estimated for May 2018