Praised as a signature children’s book, “A Wrinkle in Time” has received multiple awards for its extraordinary storytelling and powerful themes that Madeleine L’Engle crafted in 1962. Unsurprisingly, the film is simply baseless and leads audiences on an extended trip to almost nowhere. Though supported by a star-filled cast, “A Wrinkle in Time” is packed with cheesy acting and an even cheesier script.
The film follows thirteen-year-old Meg Murray on the fourth anniversary of her father’s disappearance. After suffering years of bullying, Meg learns that her father may be alive and must leap through space in order to find him and defeat the darkness.
The outdated plot is a direct reflection of the year that the novel was published. The story of the “chosen girl” has become a commonplace narrative for young adult fiction, which gave director Ava DuVernay the chance to create more a dynamic story. Instead, the film follows the plot from the novel almost beat-by-beat while also cutting out important scenes that promoted the major scenes L’Engle managed in the novel. This resulted in a lack of a sensible storyline pasted together by impressive CGI.
In this way, “A Wrinkle in Time” has been said to be a film that appeals to children rather than adults. Several moments in the film are filled with stunned silence of confusion rather than amazement. Many scenes felt as if the writers attempted to maintain the initial psychological themes that L’Engle promoted but left much to be desired in terms of meaning or substance.
Despite these negatives, most of the cast did not disappoint. Headlining, Oprah Winfrey stood out amongst her galactic sisters. Her makeup and wardrobe were incredibly done, and each of her lines was competently delivered. The film’s lead Storm Reid will likely be the breakout star while Deric McCabe, her younger brother in the film, will undoubtedly become one of the most outstanding actors of his time. In fact, the only weak link of the film is Levi Miller, the almost silent and basically useless companion.
The film does succeed in garnishing a drastic emotional response that may be unfit for children. As the main themes of the film surround abandonment and loss of a loved one, the film eventually reaches a moment of intense terror once Meg finds her father. Tears will definitely be shed once she reaches her father’s prison, but after mere seconds they are both dragged to an unknown fate. The untimely pacing joined with confusing sets and questionable writing decisions will do little to please older audiences.
As a Disney film, “A Wrinkle in Time” is almost painfully aimed at younger viewers and suffers in terms of attracting adults or those that may have read the novel at a young age.
A “Wrinkle in Time” is out now.