Friday, May 30, 2014

"About Time" (2013)

“About Time” is a cute little movie full of syrup and sugary emotion. It uses a tricky little sci-fi device known as time travel to explore questions like: What is really important in life? How can you successfully navigate all the challenges like love, helping others and making the right choices? Is all the regret and second guessing we struggle with really worth it?

The reason this is a tricky device to use in a story is that you run the risk of having your audience completely bog down in incredulity or worse, become so busy trying to make the plot line up correctly that they miss the real point you are trying to make. But, truly, this film struggles with that issue on more fronts than just the time travel. Like, how can a character criticize her friend for being “a bit of a prostitute” and then invite a man in for sex after knowing him for two hours tops?

If you manage to set aside all those issues, however, there is a really good—if somewhat obvious—reminder to simply enjoy the life we are given. If a man gifted with the ability to go back and change any moments in his life decides the true secret to happiness is to not go back and make things better, then our one go around has got to be awesome, right?

The real treasure of this “romantic comedy” though, is the side story of the man’s relationship with his father. Bill Nighy has got to be one of the best actors of all time in my opinion and he really delivers here. This is one to recommend to your dad for father’s day, if he can handle some of the questionable behavior and language that is.

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