Ava DuVernay’s adaptation of “A Wrinkle in Time” arrives with more than its share of hype, generated by fans dedicated to Madeleine L’Engle’s 1962 children’s book, as well as by DuVernay’s distinction as the first African-American woman to direct a movie with a $100 million budget. It’s also the first time a black woman, Ava DuVernay, has directed a megabudget studio spectacular.
Four years later, Meg (now played by Storm Reid) is trying to cling to that message. And here is a being, a power that says it can give her exactly that. Parts of “A Wrinkle in Time” work while others don’t; luckily, the parts that do involve the core around which L’Engle’s book resonates: love of family, love of being alive, love of our common humanity and the experiences that bind us together. And “A Wrinkle in Time” is a hell of a production, with otherworldly beings, intergalactic leaps, and an allegorical wrestling match between good and evil. Mr. Murray believes you can travel through the universe by folding both with your mind.
Here’s an oddity. The movie is based on a book with Christian themes. Then I thought, let me read the book and see what this is. Her previous films have ripped into my heart and made me eager to explore situations and feelings along with her characters.
There is a part of a filmgoer who is exhausted by an avalanche of stuff – much of it forgettable, much of it created by committee, much of it branded within an inch of its life and all of it subject to commercial expectations that are either indifferent or hostile to art – that says, “I can not get on board with a film that delivers wisdom through a giant, glowing Oprah”. “It was the like the United Nations”, says Storm Reid, about working on the film “A Wrinkle in Time”. It was the like the United Nations. After revealing that she had raised $50,000, the mogul said, “I’m going to match your $50,000… To see someone who looks like me and presented like this I just feel like it’s important for girls to see that movie”, the young girl said. Who, will feel things others won’t.
It’s a sad fate for a promising movie, but one we’ll probably see more of in the coming years.
Greatness can be a hard, lonely road-especially for a child, and most especially in Hollywood. They are joined on this voyage by an older boy named Calvin, Meg’s nascent love interest, and in that role poor Levi Miller gets the equal opportunity as many a young actress before him: if your only job is to gaze adoringly, you inevitably look like a drip.
But the movie got a Writers Guild nomination for best children’s script, and screenwriter Susan Shilliday says she has “no regrets” about the project. I also had glasses and braces and felt like something of a nerdy outcast. As she barrels toward this conclusion, it becomes clear that her journey is just as much about her own growth as it is about her father. While her bad acting won’t impact the – just kidding – upcoming presidential campaign, Oprah’s and her co-stars deliver their lines with all the sincerity of a cranky store clerk telling you to have a nice day. “I was like, Oh my god!” When Meg throws a ball into the face of the reigning mean girl, Veronica, landing her in the principal’s office, it seems strangely out of character.
Oprah Winfrey knows Storm Reid.
If you want to know more about this version, you can sample a few more clips on YouTube, like the one where Meg answers the call of duty or this fanmade music video set to Lifehouse’s “Hanging by a Moment.”
Q. How do you balance career with wanting to have a relatively normal teenager’s life? “I was a whole ball of emotions!” – and also an absolute revelation.
Sway went further into the vault and brought out a clip of the Compton native spitting some bars, and I have to admit that the filmmaker’s flow was fire.
Q. How do you navigate Social Media?