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‘A Wrinkle in Time’: Visual delight or muddled mess?

Responses to the highly anticipated A Wrinkle in Time are streaming in now that the embargo has been lifted, and “mixed” seems to be the operative word.

Based on the classic children’s book, the film reunites director Ava DuVernay with Selma star/talkshow icon/media empress Oprah Winfrey, alongside Reese Witherspoon (Big Little Lies) & Chris Pine (Wonder Woman), and introduces Storm Reid as a young hero who steps up to save the universe from fractured time.

Though the film looks visually stunning among a slate of grey and muddy blockbusters for 2018, the main criticisms seem to be its messy plot and poor pacing. Here are some reactions getting us excited, along with others tempering our expectations.

Writer Roxane Gay has been championing the film and its director, calling A Wrinkle in Time “a lovely, gorgeously shot, inspiring movie”.

Actress Jurnee Smollett-Bell (Underground) echoed Roxane’s imperative to see the film, tweeting “RUN TO SEE THIS FILM!!!”, adding newcomer Storm Reid is a “powerhouse”.

Geek Girl Diva was the first to admit the film made her cry “multiple times” as “someone who lost her father at 11 years old”.

These comments resonate with Kirbie Johnson’s thoughts, who assured us that despite being “super kid-centric”, A Wrinkle in Time “like many Disney movies has the emotional pull to tug at the adult heartstrings”.

Speaking to the film’s accuracy in regards to the books, Rachel Paige claimed “#WrinkleInTime is what happens when one of your favorite childhood books comes to life”.

Some critics are less enthusiastic.

Fanboy Nation’s Sean Mulvihill simply tweeted “it’s not good” before elaborating: “It’s a film that has no flow whatsoever. There are moments late in the film when it comes alive a bit, but it’s not enough.”

Similarly disappointed was Gregory Ellwood, who recognized the film’s “intentions are noble”, but unfortunately thought the movie “doesn’t work” and had “a ton of issues”. He did give a shoutout to the soundtrack by Sade and Demi Lovato, though.

Conner Schwerdtfeger offered a mixed review of A Wrinkle in Time, praising it as “visually ambitious and very faithful to the source material”. Schwerdtfeger described the film as “all over the place” and that it “doesn’t quite land the themes” – but still gave DuVernay credited for tackling “a nearly unfilmable novel”.

For another balanced response, Todd VanDerWerff predicted the film will be “divisive”, but praised its themes of childhood and enjoyed the fact it “wore its heart as a t-shirt”.

Some critics had no doubt about the film’s quality: Christian D. Green simply called the film “a tragedy” and gave it two thumbs down.

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