Written by / 11/10/2013 / No comments / , , , , ,

ABOUT TIME

year: 2013 cast: Domhnall Gleeson, Rachel McAdams, Bill Nighy, Margot Robbie rating: ***1/2
“Wouldn't this be a great world,” says Albert Brooks as the somewhat average and completely smitten Aaron Altman in BROADCAST NEWS, “if insecurity and desperation made us more attractive? If needy were a turn-on?” If that kind of world sounds interesting, then ABOUT TIME is your cup of English Tea… And despite the casting of popular American actress Rachel McAdams, this is as quirky-British-indie as you’re gonna get… This year, anyhow.

The quirk king himself, Bill Nighy, plays an important supporting role – especially when he tells his son, the film’s regular guy/underdog hero... a lanky, clumsy, neurotic, passive/aggressive 21-year old redhead, Tim… that they have the ability to go back (not forward) in time to change the course of personal events… So if something goes awry you can quickly make it better. Sounds a lot like THE TIME TRAVELER'S WIFE combined with GROUNDHOG DAY but it’s more SLIDING DOORS meets any Rom-Com where the main character does all they can to keep true love alive.
More than eye-candy... Margot Robbie does a fine job as the girl of the underdog's dreams...
Tim’s interests with this new power has nothing to do with making money or changing the world: he simply wants a girlfriend. Some of the best scenes occur before McAdams, as American import Mary, enters the picture… Tim tries to politely bed-down his sister's gorgeous best friend. And, after learning a thing or two about fate and getting lucky (and how the two don’t always mix), the primary romance begins: He meets Mary during a match-up date and... without giving too many clever twists away, things don’t always go as planned… He uses time travel (no machine needed, you just stand inside an enclosed room, clench your fists and close your eyes tight) to alter sporadic events, ranging from his new relationship to helping a friend’s stage play to choosing the right best man.

Some of the characters, including Tim and his artistic family, are a tad over-contented and unrealistically cozy… Sometimes writer/director Richard Curtis tugs too tightly on the heartstrings… And eventually, by the somewhat overlong conclusion, there’s a feeling the time travel aspect was a mere plot device to serve up a clichéd existential theme... But for a worthy alternative to big budget comic book movies and any sort of mainstream Hollywood romance, this is a “date flick” that should benefit either party…
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