6 Reasons Why You Should Be Excited About the Upcoming A Wrinkle in Time Movie

I must admit that I’m generally optimistic about movies. Finding random shows to watch on Netflix is one of my pastimes, and I’ll usually find something enjoyable about the experience even if the movie really is terrible (I’m looking at you, Thankskilling). This means that when movies come out that I’m actually emotionally invested in, my first reaction is eager excitement. Upon discovery that a new movie was coming out based on A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle, however, I was beyond ecstatic.

Whenever someone asked me what my favorite book was growing up, I replied with the classic line, “It’s too hard to choose.” Deep down, though, it was A Wrinkle in Time. It’s the first book I remember connecting to on a personal level. When I heard it was being made into a movie with a large budget, and was actually getting screen time through advertisements, my first impulse was delight. Looking deeper into the available information only made my hopes rise. The following 6 reasons are only some of the basis for why I think the movie will be good, even without the rose-tinted glasses I often wear. Beware spoilers if you haven’t read the book. (Go read it before the movie comes out out!)

1. Meg Murry

Meg Murry is just a great character. A female protagonist from a fantasy/science fiction novel published in 1962? Oh yeah, Madeleine L’Engle deserves all the awards the book won for that feat alone. Not only that, but Meg is intelligent, caring, and brave. She demonstrates a willingness to go against anyone that would hurt her or the people she cares about. She’s also an outcast, has problems with school authority, and is self-conscious. She is a realistic character that conquered evil despite her imperfections, and paved the way for the likes of Hermione Granger and other female characters we know and love. Storm Reid will be playing Meg in the upcoming movie, and has the potential to create a cinematic heroine for the next generation.  

2. Clichés (both upholding and obliterating them)

One complaint I’ve heard about the trailer is that it looks too cliché. For those that say this, may I remind you of the first line of the book: “It was a dark and stormy night.” There will be clichés. There were plenty within the book. However, L’Engle masterfully embraced some clichés, and smashed others to pieces. Take Aunt Beast, for example. After escaping from the source of the darkness threatening the universe, Meg and Company land on the planet of Ixchel where they meet grotesque beings that Meg immediately designates “beasts.” To everyone’s surprise, the beings turn out to be incredibly kind and equally determined to prevent the spread of evil. Meg names the one she becomes particularly attached to Aunt Beast, in honor of her loving nature. L’Engle created a story that provides a template for both eye-rolling clichés and brilliant originality, a perfect platform for a movie.  

3. Casting for the Mrs. W’s

Speaking of breaking clichés, what about the fact that the extremely powerful interdimensional beings that are compared to angels are depicted as eccentric women that start the book living in a supposedly haunted house? The choice to cast Mindy Kaling, Reese Witherspoon, and Oprah Winfrey as Mrs. Who, Mrs. Whatsit, and Mrs. Which respectively was an excellent move to show their prominence in the hierarchy of beings within A Wrinkle in Time. Three real-life pioneering women to play the parts of three of the most powerful beings in the universe? Yes, please!

4. Ava DuVernay

Another of the powerhouse of women involved in this production is the director, Ava DuVernay. Previously, she has been nominated for an Academy Award and has won four EMMYs, a BAFTA award, and a Peabody award. With A Wrinkle in Time, she will be the third woman to direct a movie with a budget of over $100 million, and the first woman of color to do so. Her choice of actors and actresses has also resulted in a large diversity within the cast. With this, A Wrinkle in Time has the possibility of being a huge step forward for Hollywood in terms of representation.

5. Themes of Freedom and Conformity

The whole novel has a timeless quality to it. The themes within resonate just as much today as when the novel was written, one such theme is that of resisting conformity. A common phrase today is “Make America Great Again.” For some people, this means going back to the 50’s (when this book was written), or rather, going back to the “vision” of the 50’s: perfect families with perfect houses and perfect lives. I know that when I read the part about Camazotz, a land of pure conformity due to falling to the darkness, the image I got was of 50’s era smiles and white picket fences. The imagery in the trailers matches well with this feeling. The fact that the movie is coming out in such a politically charged climate, and the protagonists are actively fighting against this ideal of perfect conformity? I’d say it’s timely. (Puns are always intended)

6. Themes of Love and Hate

Another timeless theme is the battle between love and hate, and it seems to continue to grow more important every year. Just like Meg is able to use her love for her brother to save him from the darkness, it is necessary to remember that nobody beats hate with more hate. The messages within A Wrinkle in Time could not be more crucial in the world today.

It may be a bit controversial to be excited about a movie coming out, that is based on such an important part of many people’s childhood literature. After all, there will undeniably be deviations from the novel, and the movie will never be as good as the book. However, I see hope for the future with A Wrinkle in Time, and that is good enough for me. The movie comes out on March 9, if you want to decide for yourself.

Cover, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6