Monday, November 11, 2013

Love Won't Give Me Time (Movie Review: About Time)

I'm a sucker for romantic stories, and I am an Anglophile, so you know I would love "About Time." Plus, it's from the creator of "Love Acually," and "Notting Hill," two movies I am very fond off. And did I mention that it is set in London, which is probably my most favorite European city, so all in all I was expecting a lot from this movie. Maybe because my expectation was too high that I found myself underwhelmed by it. It's a "time travel" story. Tim, played by Domhnall Gleason is summoned by his father on his 21st birthday, telling him that all the male members from his family can travel backwards in time, at specific times in their lives. So when he meets Mary (Rachel McAdams, luminous here) he pulls out all the stops, making sure their cute meet is perfect. The cute meet is my favorite part of a romance, so I was very happy that in here, they have several cute meet stories. But after they marry, the film loses its steam for me. While the story line between him and his father is earnest, it seems to belong in another movie. I have a major problem with Gleason's performance. While his nerdy, geeky persona was cute in the beginning, I felt it stilted the story later on, and I thought he lacked leading man screen presence that I was ambivalent about what would happen to his character. Plus, the message towards the end was a little too saccharine that I found myself rolling my eyes. But the movie made me think: we all have moments in our lives that we wish we could change, scenes we hoped we could change,  but we should also realize that everything else changes after we do so. I wonder if this movie would work better for me on second viewing. Perhaps there was a lot I missed. For now, though, I could only half-recommend this.

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