A Wrinkle in Time Folds In On Itself

This book’s journey to the silver screen has been long and fraught with peril. Loved by many, the memory may be more cast in amber. When read as an adult, the book loses much of its wonder. So expectations were high and folks were concerned when Disney undertook the project, tapping Ava DuVernay to direct.

Madeleine L’Engle’s beloved science-fiction adventure novel tells the tale of Meg Murry (Storm Reid), her younger brother Charles Wallace (Deric McCabe) and her buddy from school Calvin (Levi Miller) to travel across the universe to search for Meg’s father (Chris Pine) who mysteriously disappeared four years earlier. How do they travel? They can fold time, and with the help of three ladies empowered with magical talents: Mrs. Whatsit (Reese Witherspoon), Mrs. Who (Mindy Kaling) and Mrs. Which (Oprah Winfrey) they set off on a series of jumbled adventures.

The plot seems to have been cobbled together from a couple scripts, as internal consistency is not the film’s strong point. It managed to escape the cutting room with several great scenes intact, undoubtedly due to DuVernay’s vision behind the camera. Her excellent documentary “13th” pulls apart the history of that amendment to the Constitution, and she handled the complex subject matter with aplomb.

Unfortunately, with a “Wrinkle in Time” it seems she was out of her depth (unlikely) or the influence of perhaps the studio or Oprah put the powers at cross-purposes.

Brad Auerbach has been a journalist and editor covering the media, entertainment, travel and technology scene for many years. He has written for Forbes, Time Out London, SPIN, Village Voice, LA Weekly and early in his career won a New York State College Journalism Award.