From first glance, “About Time” looks to be just another chick flick, a predictable love story with actress Rachel McAdams stealing a young man’s heart, but looks can be deceiving.
Director Richard Curtis has built his name upon romantic comedies, but this latest film deserves a different category.
Sure, there are some sappy lines here and there and yes, a realist could sit through the movie and consider certain scenes unrealistic. However, this movie paints love in ways every movie should paint it to be: innocent, vulnerable and unbreakable.
Tim, played by Domhnall Gleeson, is a shy redhead who, upon turning 21, learns a deep, dark family secret: the men in his family can travel through time. Once Tim learns of this abnormal capability, he uses it to find his greatest desire: true love. A young and ambitious lawyer, Tim moves from his English countryside home to London, where he meets an adorable American named Mary, played by Rachel McAdams.
I hope I haven’t lost your attention yet. Yes — the brief summary sounds like the average romantic flick, but this movie has many layers to it and packs in several surprises.
Tim and Mary’s awe-inspiring chemistry encompasses a large portion of the plot, but there are more bonds of innocent and vulnerable love, as I mentioned before, that are just as awe-inspiring. The love between a father and a son, in-laws, brother and sister and the beauty of marriage give this movie depth that many other romances fail to show.
Although I was impressed with the self-affirming, uplifting movie, I was not moved by McAdams. It’s not that she exemplified awful acting, but I did not see layers to her character. I could see Allie from “The Notebook” and Paige from “The Vow” when I should have been taken by the character of Mary.
I felt like McAdams could not separate herself from her other romance roles, but the depth of the story and the director’s ability to show many kinds of love moved me. Instead of leaving the theater wishing for a whirlwind romance, I left reflecting on the self-fulfilling relationships that make life worthwhile.
MOVE gives “About Time” 4 out of 5 stars.