Arts & Entertainment,  This Week's Paper

Disney Strikes Magic with First African-American Female Directed-film: A Wrinkle in Time

“A Wrinkle in Time,” is the first film directed by a black woman with a 100 million dollar budget. That black woman’s name is Ava Duvernay, and she created an excellent film about the power of believing in one’s self. “A Wrinkle in Time,” based off the novel of the same name, is a film that captures the beauty of existing; that everyone is capable of believing and making the world a better place, but it is ultimately up to you to make that choice.

Meg, played by Storm Reid, is a precocious middle schooler struggling to find her place in the world after her father’s disappearance, and her struggle is reflected in her journey to find her father. Luckily, she has the help of her little brother Charles Wallace and her friend Calvin to be with her every step of the way. Meg also has the assistance of Mrs. Who, Mrs. Whatsit and Mrs. Which, three women who are protectors of the universe, played by Mindy Kaling, Reese Witherspoon and Oprah Winfrey, respectively.

The best thing about the movie was Duvernay’s directorial work. From the wide shots of Los Angeles’s palm trees, to displaying the horrors that is IT (a dark energy that breeds insecurity, jealousy and hatred) Duvernay shows depth of color and uses various angles to show the beauty or danger of whichever world Meg and her friends inhabit.

While the movie was extremely beautiful, the script was lacking. The screenwriter, Jennifer Lee, really did a disservice by having everyone speak so formally to each other. The family may have shown a lot of love visually with the aid of Duvernay’s direction, but there were no strong familial moments in the actual script. In fact, without proper direction, Meg and Charles would seem less like brother and sister, and more like two kids who happen to be looking for the same man at the same time.

The only times the formality made sense was when Mrs. Who/Whatsit/Which were speaking to Meg or Charles, because they were representatives of the universe. There is a lot of awkward formality in the script that did not need to be there, and many lines in the movie veered toward cheesiness.

However, being cheesy is perfect for little kids who want to be as strong as Meg and her brother Charles. Being cheesy works for adults who need a perfect ending once in a while, who always need to be reminded to “be a warrior.” Happy endings and beautiful stories have a place in this world and always will when the world itself is so full of darkness, so full of IT. Duvernay sees that, and it was clear that there was a powerful message for people of all ages throughout the film. While the film wasn’t perfect, and certainly had its flaws, it ultimately is a movie with a beautiful story and an extremely positive message. So go see “A Wrinkle in Time” — especially if you need a reminder that there is power in flaws, and that love will always persist.

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