Thu. May 30th, 2024

Review: A Wrinkle In Time

I borrowed and watched the Disney version film of A Wrinkle In Time. Seemed like yet another case of sometimes things find you, but it may just be that I work in libraries and am surrounded by books and pop culture (the way I like it) and am therefore bound to bump into things on my to do list. I read the graphic novel version recently, and I always like to watch the film after I’ve read the book. So, there it was. This film came out in 2018 and featured Oprah Winfrey as one of the three Misses. It was directed by Ava DuVernay, and I liked it a lot. The storytelling was much more to the point, in my opinion, and elements were added that expanded on the novel and gave it a lot more sense (mind you, it’s been a long while since I read the actual novel, so I could be wrong here). The conformity versus individualism theme of the novel was replaced by a more nuanced take on an evil (called IT) that insinuates itself into humanity and takes all the love, replacing it with greed, envy – sin, basically. I’ve recently become aware of the Christian elements in the story and L’Engle’s apparent intent to criticize what she saw as ‘Christian piety’. Perhaps this was the conformity that so many readers interpreted as a critique of Communism.

The main character, Meg, battles IT in a spectacular finale inside an amorphous giant ‘brain’, with its neurons firing like live electric whips that grab at and sting her. This was a far more satisfying depiction to the novel’s disembodied brain in a container image. After Meg vanquishes IT with her love for brother Charles Wallace, who has been under ITs spell, the three Misses return to tell her she did well and will be a good warrior for the forces of light. They then go on to list such warriors that have been represented by

Chloe x Hallie

Earth in the past. They mention Albert Einstein, Marie Curie, Gandhi, Maya Angelou, Jane Austen, Frida Kahlo, Nelson Mandela, and Oscar Schindler (remember him from Schindler’s List?). It’s an eccentric list, not particularly satisfying (to me), but I get the point. Some reviewers on Letterboxd were also a bit perplexed by it too. One wag suggested they give Oprah a mention. The book made specific reference to Jesus and Buddha, which gained it some controversy. Personally, I’m annoyed they didn’t give Karl Marx a guernsey. I really enjoyed the songs and music videos provided by the DVD I borrowed. They were I Believe by DJ Khalid and Demi Lovato, and Champion by Chloe x Hallie.