Sometimes you read a book and think that it simply cannot be properly adapted to film. To do it justice is beyond the scope of modern technology, or to do so would be prohibitive, and the end result would never live up to the grandeur of your imagination. Madeleine L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time is one of those books, as the beloved science fiction/fantasy novel has strangely never had a feature film adaptation. Now we are only months away from a film that looks to capture all the magic of the novel and match even the most vivid of imaginations. Disney has debuted a new Wrinkle in Time TV spot for the film as we enter into a new year, so check it out below; your eyes will thank you.
If this Facebook spot is any indication, you can probably watch this movie on mute without subtitles, and you will still spend the whole film with your jaw resting firmly on the floor. The very first shot on the playground with the children playing basketball in slow motion all around Storm Reid's Meg Murray is gorgeous. In a trailer full of amazing and fantastical imagery, this first shot stands out right away, even though it is seemingly an ordinary scene with nothing magical about it. This sets the tone for the rest of the preview, which is full of beautiful composition and confident use of color. The shot of Chris Pine's Dr. Alex Murry kneeling in some sort of prison with a sun-like light behind him looks like a painting. Director Ava DuVernay and cinematographer Tobias. A. Schliesser look to have created something truly special and distinct with this film that will ideally be a fearless visual feast that lives up to the source material.
Tobias A. Schliesser was also the cinematographer on Disney's Beauty and the Beast. That film was also a visual marvel, but he appears to have crafted something truly different here. Ava DuVernay may be best well-known for Selma and 13th, grounded fare that dealt with real issues in an honest way, but she is showing what else she is capable of with A Wrinkle in Time. As the first woman of color to direct a $100+ million blockbuster movie with this film, Ava DuVernay is clearly showing what she is capable of and exploding through that glass ceiling in a majorly stylish way. And given Disney's love of blockbuster franchises, you have to think that if A Wrinkle in Time is a success, the Mouse House will want to lock her down for the rest of Madeleine L'Engle's Time Quintet.
But the visual beauty isn't the only notable thing about this 30-second Wrinkle in Time spot. In a voiceover from Chris Pine we hear about the main conceit of the movie, the ability to travel 91 billion light years in an instant. This idea of the tesseract (no, not the MCU one) where by folding space, the shortest distance between two points is not a straight line is where my ears perked up when I read the book as a kid. The ticking clock motif, timing the visuals to the score, is a cool touch that works well with blending form and content.
The teaser also gives us quick looks at the film's killer cast, including Zach Galifianakis and Gugu Mbatha-Raw, as well as Mrs. Whatsit, Who and Which, played by Resse Witherspoon, Mindy Kaling and Oprah Winfrey, respectively. A Wrinkle in Time hits theaters on March 9. Check out our guide for the twenty four other biggest releases hitting theaters in this new year.