Hedelt review: 'A Winkle in Time' isn't worth anyone's time

Review: 'A Wrinkle in Time' Gives a Child of the Universe Powerful Friends

"I was starstruck and really excited, and when I walked in the room, she was like, Stooorrrmmm!" the 14-year-old star of A Wrinkle in Time recalls of meeting the indomitable Ms. Winfrey for the first time. So what will it mean that DuVernay, a figurehead for diverse representation who proved her directing talents with the MLK biopic "Selma" and the micro-budget indie "Middle of Nowhere", has crafted a costly spectacle that's hardly wow-inducing?

I like that she is so peculiar and that she doesn't see how attractive and smart she is, but everybody else does. She shot the film in 11 days on a $50,000 budget.

"She was so flawless in the role", DuVernay added.

Meg Murry (Storm Reid) is an outsider, she drifts on the peripheral of her school and faces bullying from the other students and the principal, with only her sweet 6-year-old little brother, Charles Wallace (Deric McCabe), for a friend. Meg's father (Chris Pine), a NASA scientist, has been missing for four years. Who (Mindy Kaling), each bedazzled and glittered like phantasmagoric sorcerers.

The story inevitably takes us into the "purely evil energy" of Camazotz, which transforms sweet, mind-reading Charles Wallace into a red-eyed demon variation of the brother Meg loves. "So even though I loved the book I never saw myself as Meg", the Atlanta native says.

I wanted to stay true to Meg and who she was and stay true to her journey, but also knew there would be some differences. But in the end, it was all worth it. Something tells me this film was lost the minute it wrapped.

"There are no black or Southeast Asian 'Mrs.' in the book". You start caring more about her as a character, but only for a short time, as the film closes too soon. The audience included a group of Girl Scouts and their parents, all of whom seemed totally enthralled by the movie. Once Hagrid and Glinda leave, their pupils use what they've learned to explore their surroundings alone, in turn illuminating the rules and geography and politics that govern the worlds they ― and we alongside them ― have entered.

It's possible I'm too hardened to appreciate the earnestness on display here.

That's a shame because there are neat messages about how children see themselves and good vs. bad in the world. At the time the book came out, Christian readers complained about the facets of her story - mainly that it showcased magical elements from three beings who used crystal balls and had mythical powers. Meg doesn't have any superpowers. Her journey to self acceptance is an inspiration we all know they need today. This optimistic circularity is certainly contemporary, but in an age in which adults are continually amazed by children's grasp of technology, it would have made a lot more sense to let Meg harness her father's science instead of her own personality flaws. It isn't just wishful thinking, either. Because of her low self-esteem, Meg can not seem to fathom why anyone would compliment her or think that she is special. But the details needed to shift "A Wrinkle in Time" from an idea to an immersive landscape are fuzzy at best.

"I want [audiences] to feel empowered and inspired and like they can do anything they want to do", Reid says. I hope that our movies can raise awareness that African American people can be represented in the right way, and we can be given the opportunities as all other people.

Britni Danielle is a Los Angeles-based writer and editor who regularly explores the intersections of race, gender and pop culture.

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