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“A Wrinkle In Time” fails to impress fans

March 29, 2018

 

A Wrinkle in Time – two out of five stars

 

HANNAH JONES
Staff Reporter | hej006@latech.edu

 

Alongside the myriad of reboots of old films, this month Disney introduced the fantasy adventure “A Wrinkle In Time,” a movie based off the book of the same name by Madeleine L’Engle. However, perhaps a more accurate way to describe this reboot — there was an original film produced only 15 years ago in 2003—is to say that it is loosely based on the novel.

 

Growing up, I fell in love with L’Engle’s novel “A Wrinkle in Time”, finding myself in the protagonist, Meg Murray. She is the epitome of adolescence, struggling in school and life in general due to the insecurities. She feels alone in her family — her two younger twin brothers being normal kids, her mother being not only a brilliant scientist, but also beautiful and kind, and the absence of her father with whom she felt the most connection.

 

The only one in her family, besides her dad, whom she connects with is her youngest brother, Charles Wallace, who is seen as strange by everyone (even his own family) except Meg.

 

Of course, in this description of the book, the 2018 reboot of this beloved tale has already missed the mark. Where are the twins? And Charles Wallace was certainly not adopted as portrayed at the beginning of the film (which has major dialogue influences later during the climactic scenes), nor did he speak to anyone outside of the family.

 

Besides these seemingly minor, though majorly affective, plot deviances, the 2018 film appeared to attempt visually stimulating cinematography and CGI effects in order to create the universe in which “A Wrinkle In Time” occurs. However, there were few scenes that explored these vast realms. Even within the scenes containing the various realms (which due to plot cuts there were less of than in the novel), dialogue and close-ups choked out any emotional response to the captivating landscapes.

 

Dialogue was another greatly overused asset in the film. Much of the dialogue was repetitive, particularly pertaining to Meg’s need to find and love herself. Pep talks are wonderful, yet in good movies, the audience does not need twenty of the same conversations between a protagonist and the mentor to understand how the character feels about herself. It is called body language. And a cohesive and clear plot. (Or was this movie supposed to be simply an extension of “The Oprah Winfrey Show”?)

 

Meg draws the reader or viewer in with her universalism. Most of humanity struggles with insecurities at some point in their lives. As an effect of these insecurities is her negative attitude, though she is never explicitly violent in the novel. Her actions at the beginning of the film were shocking.

 

And Mrs. Whatsit — such a dear character for her self-sacrifice in giving up her life as a star to diminish the darkness — is reduced in the 2018 film to a whimsy, flirty, down-right silly character who seems to have no sense of the seriousness facing the children and the universe.

 

But despite the plot and production defects (perhaps it is just personal preference to not see close-up shots of actors for 75 percent of an adventure film) it was the unacceptable injury to the characterization of each character that produced regret for the precious $8.50 wasted on this movie.

 

“A Wrinkle In Time” was neither visually appealing nor emotionally stimulating with so many defects and deficiencies. Unfortunately for those involved with the film, the past couple of years and millions of dollars spent in producing this film were wasted in this poor attempt at a beloved classic.

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