Review: Disney’s “A Wrinkle in Time” redeems itself on-screen

In Arts & Entertainment, Film & TV, Lifestyle, Reviews
Refracted character stills surround Chris Pine's character in this promotional image from the film "A Wrinkle in Time"
(Courtesy of Disney)

“A Wrinkle in Time” by Disney is an imaginative film that takes viewers on a cosmic journey to find self-love and acceptance. The screen is constantly filled with extraterrestrial and vibrant colors as a reminder that the characters are traveling through time and space.

The Disney film is based on the 1962 novel, “A Wrinkle in Time” written by Madeleine L’Engle. The novel was first adapted into a film in 2003, also by Disney, but this film was a dud with less than impressive acting and special effects.

However, director Ava DuVernay turned it around with this enchanted rendition. The visual effects and intense wall-to-wall music keeps viewers on their toes as it follows the characters on their interstellar journey.

The film stars Storm Reid as Meg Murry, the daughter of two world-renowned physicists. Meg struggles with her identity at a fragile age and mimics the average teen with her snappy attitude, which often comes off as rude.

She wrestles with her own insecurities, faults and feelings of self-doubt through the film. Her character’s journey shares a positive message to growing girls who similarly cope with the same vulnerability.

Meg’s resistant personality is seen as a response to the disappearance of her father, Mr. Murry (Chris Pine) who goes missing after becoming obsessed with finding the formula to time travel. After a long night of deliberation, he mysteriously disappears leaving Meg and Charles without a father, and a confused and broken-hearted Mrs. Murry (Gugu Mbatha-Raw).

The film follows Charles, Meg and their friend Calvin (Levi Miller) as they travel through the universe in search of Mr. Murry via tessering, a way to travel through folds in the fabric of time. On their journey, they land on beautiful worlds and run to the darkest of all masses, The It.

Three celestial beings help them through time and space, serving as guides in the universe. Mrs. Whatsit (Reese Witherspoon) is a playful but impatient extraterrestrial that brightens the screen with her bubbly personality.

But the film fails to explain what this character actually is. During one confusing scene, she transforms into a supernatural animal-like figure without explaining why of her extraterrestrial counterparts do the same.

Mrs. Which (Oprah Winfrey) is the inspiring goddess-like leader who reminds each character of what’s important, right and possible, but the film could have provided more insight into who she is and where she came from.

The third of the trio, Mrs. Who (Mindy Kaling), only speaks in famous quotes, citing legends like Gandhi as well as poets and rappers. Kaling does an exceptional job at alternating between her usual outspoken, comedic character and a more refreshing, wise Mrs. Who.

The three spiritual leaders are seen in several different enchanting costumes, which were probably the most aesthetically pleasing aspects of the film.

The movie could have been better executed by explaining the character’s background information in greater depth. However, children and teens can still relate to the personal battles the characters face. Overall, it does a fair job of encouraging a younger generation to overcome personal insecurities and learn to accept themselves as they are.

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