A Wrinkle in Time 05/10/04 ABC 8pm/Est

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by Brandon Gantt, May 10, 2004.

  1. Brandon Gantt

    Brandon Gantt Second Unit

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    I thought I would start a fresh thread on this since the others are quite old. As you can see from the heading A Wrinkle in Time finally airs tonight on ABC. I really don't know what the three year delay was, but I've decided not to get my hopes up too much. The New York Times has given it a very good review, so the best can only be hoped for. Originally intended as a four-hour two-night (3 hours without commercials) miniseries this evenings presentation is a three hour version, cut by 45 minutes, prepared for the film festival circuit. Hopefully someday the entire uncut miniseries will be available on DVD.
     
  2. Michael Martin

    Michael Martin Screenwriter

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    That bites. I'm hoping for a good movie - this was a favorte book of mine as a child, and it would be neat to be able to share the movie with my daughters.
     
  3. Michael Martin

    Michael Martin Screenwriter

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    The review has not left me hopeful. I fully realize that some things have to be changed when translating a book to the screen, but it sounds like some pretty radical changes.

    If the review is correct, Meg knows what happened to her father (though whether she believes it is another matter). In the book, a huge part of the story was Meg NOT knowing what happened to her father - in fact, even Meg's mother had only a vague notion of what MIGHT have happened. A lot of the story was Meg discovering what happened to him, and what she learned about herself and the universe along the way. It seems like robbing the story of a lot of power if you immediately resolve one of the main mysteries in the book.
     
  4. Brandon Gantt

    Brandon Gantt Second Unit

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    I've never read the original story but I do have it on order. It will be interesting to compare the differences.
     
  5. Brandon Gantt

    Brandon Gantt Second Unit

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    Zap2It has named A Wrinkle in Time one of the "Best Bets" of the night.

    For those unfamiliar with the story:
     
  6. Brandon Gantt

    Brandon Gantt Second Unit

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  7. Michael Martin

    Michael Martin Screenwriter

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    Just wondering if it was the full or edited-for-time version that won the award. If it's reasonably good in broadcast form and they release it on DVD with the cut footage restored, I'd most likely purchase it.
     
  8. Ray H

    Ray H Producer

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    I'm a little apprehensive about this one. I was interested years ago when I first read the book, but the ads that I saw last night looked pretty bad.
     
  9. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Executive Producer

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    Well, that was a frustrating experience. They found the absolute pitch-perfect Meg; not terribly pretty but far from ugly with just the right mix of huskiness and intellect in the voice. The actress who played her nailed the role. The surrealistic backdrop had moments of inspiration as well.

    But overall, a rather mediocre production with the catch that we'll probably never see a better Meg should it be adapted again. Calvin and the father were far too bland, and Charles Wallace, while suitably creepy, lacked the intangible quality possessed in the book. And the three witches were overly histrionic to the point of annoyance.

    Despite the hokeyiness here and there, I was pleased to see the gist of the story theme make it across relatively unscathed - particularly because it's so rare anymore. In a world that increasingly obsesses over diversity of skin color and gender and background but in turn increasingly supresses diversity of ideas, this celebrated the true things that make one unique. The basketball scene close to the end, while clumsy and hokey in execution held merit.

    In short, far better than I expected, just short of satisfying.
     
  10. ThomasC

    ThomasC Lead Actor

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    No wonder she looked familiar, she was Kitty Pryde in X2. [​IMG]
     
  11. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    I watched the first two-thirds with my roommate; I skipped the last third when my girlfriend called. In general, it was reasonably faithful to the spirit and intent of the book, though it did tremendously dilute Christian/Universalist underpinnings. An easy example of this is Charles' interpretation of the singing on Uriel. He states, "it's about joy." In the book, Mrs. Whatsit interprets it as starting, "Glory to God in the highest..."

    I agree that Meg was well cast. I even liked this interpretation of Charles better than the original character. In the book he's far too precocious for me, feeling more like an emotionally stunted genius-man than an advanced child.

    The movie also simplified themes, perhaps to its detriment. In the book, Camosotz is presented as mild feeling planet, perhaps in autumn. The children arrive in the afternoon. It's pleasant at first, perhaps almost comfortable. In the movie, it's a shrieking, cruel desert world, with a clearly ominous, darkened town. I think this harms the concept that evil is not always apparent, but can look attractive, seductive.

    Similarly with the boy playing ball out os sync with the others, the movie shows him as defiant and creative. In the book I remember him fumbling, dropping the ball. His mother was concerned he'd be identified as flawed. This is a more powerful image, I think, when compared to Meg's feelings of inadequacy. Also, I think most kids (and people) have greater stress over being lesser than the crowd, rather than feeling better and forced to act lesser.

    But despite these weaknesses, the move kept major themes and plot elements. For a TV movie, it was pretty good. I felt like the creators earnestly tried to do the book justice and they gave me new ways of seeing the characters.
     

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