A Wrinkle in Time


D: Ava DuVernay

Disney (Jim Whitaker & Catherine Hand)

US 2018

109 mins

Adventure/Science Fiction/Fantasy

W: Jennifer Lee & Jeff Stockwell [based on the novel by Madeleine L'Engle]

DP: Tobias A. Schliessler

Ed: Spencer Averick

Mus: Ramin Djawadi

Storm Reid (Meg Murry), Deric McCabe (Charles Wallace Murry), Levi Miller (Calvin O'Keefe), Oprah Winfrey (Mrs. Which), Reese Witherspoon (Mrs. Whatsit), Mindy Kaling (Mrs. Who)

Disney studios, with their politically correct mindset, decided to prove a point by appointing an African-American Woman as a director for a multi-million dollar production, and though Ava DuVernay's 2014 movie Selma was amongst the best films of the year, nominated for a Best Picture Oscar, it's one thing to direct a serious biopic about Martin Luther King's political activism and a completely different thing to dip into the realms of science fiction fantasy, especially when the subject is adapted from a novel many deemed to be unfilmable.

In a nutshell, the plot follows a gifted young girl, who along with her brother and best friend, are transported across time and space by three supreme beings so she can rescue her estranged father from the forces of evil.

The movie bears some resemblance with 2009's The Lovely Bones, mostly in the respect that it's style over substance with the plot taking a back seat for bright and colourful visual effects to do its stuff... unfortunately, even the effects in this movie are very poorly done, perhaps because the director had little experience in using them.

DuVernay has since commented that the film is aimed solely at young girls between 7-14 years old, but this doesn't convince me. A good film should be able to transcend barriers such as age and gender. Perhaps I'm being a little harsh, especially since it does take chances with experimental methods rather than playing it safe, but that's just fancy talk for throwing things at the screen just to see what sticks. It's not harsh at all to call the film a complete mess, which is made even worse when people call it a "noble failure" due to it being a beacon for diversity and inclusion. 

Disney very proudly proclaimed that DuVernay was the first female person of colour to direct a film with a production budget of more than $100m... they were slightly more quiet when it emerged that the studio lost more than $80m on this vanity project.

Politically correct or not, A Wrinkle In Time is a complete mess of a film and amongst the worst released in 2018.


Oprah Winfrey in A Wrinkle in Time
Oprah Winfrey in A Wrinkle in Time