First thing first. I am here for Oprah. I’m here for Ava. I’m here for my namesake, Gugu Mbatha-Raw. And I’m here for sister power and little brown warrior girls slaying proverbial Goliaths, and inevitably saving the day. Secondly, I have not watched a movie since I returned from Wakanda. When I walked into the cinema, I had high expectations. Because like it’s Disney, and did I mention Ava DuVernay- the first African-American woman to get a budget over $100 million dollars to make a movie?
‘A Wrinkle in Time’ is an adaptation from the 1960s children’s classic novel by Madeleine L’Engle. And no we have not read the book, so this is not a “the book is WAY better” or has it done the book justice rant.
The film is centred around the Murry family. Papa Murry, Dr. Alex Murry (Chris Pine) and mama Murry, Dr. Kate Murry, (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) are genius NASA scientists, way ahead of their time exploring a concept known as ‘tesseract.’ Tesseracting is a time warp of sorts referred to as a ‘wrinkle in time’ where space pauses, making way for instant transition between stars, the cosmos and galaxies.
Fast forward to four years later, and the Murry’s are just not the same happy family they once were. Papa Murry has just vanished and the community is gossiping and speculating that he has deserted his wife and kids, Meg (Storm Reid) and adopted son Charles Wallace Murry (Deric McCabe). Meg is traumatised by the absence of her father and has developed rebellious tendencies in addition to not really liking herself much.
I found myself tessarecting back to Wakanda whilst watching the film, just for a few seconds. But, this movie has so much light, wisdom and a big heart.
What we loved about the film
A shout-out to black literature giants – The DOP made sure we see the words “black literature and poetry” with an image of the beloved late poet Maya Angelou in the background as Meg slowly walks through the school hallway before encountering a ‘mean girls’ interaction with her bullies.
Interesting fact: Screenwriter Jennifer Lee and director Ava Duvernay had bullies in school and based Meg’s bully’s character Veronica Kiley, after both of their bullies. The first and last name is a combination of their bullies. “So don’t bully people, you might end up in one of our movies. You never know,” said director, Duvernay.
Beautiful CGI, kaleidoscopic cinematography, lovely music – I almost screamed when I heard Sade’s soothing voice – did mention I’m here for the soundtrack too? I just wonder how Sade keeps doing a Mr. Murry every 10 years or so and tesseracts back with a killer track. Every. Single. Time.
When Meg is summoned to the headmaster’s office after hitting one of her bullies with a ball in the face and gets asked – “don’t you wonder why they don’t like you?” and here feisty response, “I don’t wonder and I don’t care.” No we are not here for violence and do not endorse it at all, but in a world where girls care too much about what others or their peers think, it was quite refreshing to hear that.
We loved the father daughter moment when Papa Murry (by way of apology) said, “I wanted to shake hands with the universe, but I should instead have been holding yours.” Many girls will never hear their daddies say that.
Favourite quotes by Mrs. Who (Mindy Kaling)
“We can’t take any credit for our talents. It’s how we use them that counts”- Madeleine
“Life without love is like a tree without blossoms or fruit.” – Khalil Gibran
“The wound is the place where the light enters you.” – Rumi
“You need to git up, git out and git something.” – OutKast
We all love Mama Oprah and her hair and edges were snatched, make-up and costumes were poppin’, but we don’t think her role as Mrs. Which will go down as one of her best or memorable performance.
Reese Whitherspoon is a delight as Mrs. Whatsit – her gorgeous wardrobe and comic wit are one of the highlights of the film.
Reese Witherspoon is Mrs. Whatsit in Disneys A WRINKLE IN TIME.
Overall message of the film
Faith, love and hope is everything, especially love. Light exists even in the darkest situations. Love is thee frequency. It’s a delightful movie, especially for the young ones. But that the little warrior girl inside you, will appreciate it for reminding you that you are enough. And that all you need is inside you. The one song that kept playing in my head after watching the movie is The Brand New Heavies’ classic – “you are the universe, and there isn’t nothing you can’t do. If you can see it, then you can do it, I believe in you.”