Now Showing: A Wrinkle in Time

Though well-intentioned, Disney’s newly released fantasy, ‘A Wrinkle in Time,’ does not live up to the classic novel.

Pauline Woodley, A&E Editor

Classic childhood novels are hard enough to reimagine, and sadly, it takes more than a brilliant cast and visually stunning effects to make a movie resonate these days. “A Wrinkle in Time,” starring poised newcomer Storm Reid as Meg Murry, lacks a certain substance that is easily apparent in Disney’s other movies.

Loosely based on the novel by the same name, “A Wrinkle in Time” follows Meg and her band of crusaders through space and time in order to saver her father Mr. Murry (Chris Pine), who is stuck in the universe due to his thirst for knowledge. Meg, her brother Charles Wallace (Deric McCabe) and her assumed school crush Calvin (Levi Miller) follow Mrs. Which, Mrs. Whatsit and Mrs. Who (played by Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon and Mindy Kaling, respectively) through the universe and must battle the darkness called “It.”

Beautifully directed by Ava DuVernay, the movie’s visual aspect was on par with DuVernay’s other successful projects, including films “Selma” and “13th.” However, the fact that the film was nice to look at does not make up for an almost nonexistent plot. With little true development of the characters or themes, the movie did not live up to the book’s storyline.

The CGI effects worked well considering the scientific fantasy that the movie follows. It is the lazy script that is its most notable fault and ironically, one of the film’s many overarching themes deals with accepting your faults.

The abstract idea of this movie is appealing, the cast is phenomenal and it’s worth wondering how well it could have done if it gave its audience more credit and didn’t oversimplify the novel’s major themes. “A Wrinkle in Time” seems to be hitting a very specific, limited target audience that many cannot relate to.

In defense of her movie, DuVernay claimed it was made for 8-14 year olds, and though I applaud the movie’s impact on young girls especially, it is worth noting the potential of the film, had it targeted a more widespread audience.

The casting is the film’s strong suit, each actor giving performances true to their character. The standout roles include Winfrey’s Mrs. Which and Pine’s Mr. Murry, as both excel despite having little to work with, script-wise. Their character’s lines alone would not hold up with less experienced actors, but in the hands of the likes of Witherspoon and Kaling, the Mrs. are accurately brought to life.

Overall, its redeeming qualities are not enough to get this film off its feet. Though its efforts won’t go unnoticed, this adaptation of “A Wrinkle in Time” is far from a classic and unlike the original novel, it is lacking the necessary depth.