Sunday, 8 September 2013

About Time

It’s normal for me to avoid comedies at the best of times therefore the chances of me watching a romantic comedy voluntarily are non-existent.  A Richard Curtis film is my idea of hell.

The trailer for About Time implied that scene stealer Bill Nighy would have an important role to play.  This was enough for me to break with tradition and go along quite happily to see the film.
PLOT:  When Tim (Domhnall Gleeson) turns twenty-one his Dad (Bill Nighy) reveals a family secret – the men in the family have the ability to time travel.  Tim, a hopeless romantic, uses his gift to find love.  After several failed attempts Tim woos Mary (Rachel McAdams) and they fall in love.  Tim attempts to fix his families problems using his time travelling abilities however there are times when this does more harm than good.  END PLOT
The plot of About Time isn’t original.  It is essentially The Time Travellers Wife meets The Butterfly Effect meets Groundhog Day sprinkled with the Richard Curtis touch.  Take this how you will.
Despite everything feeling familiar (insert timewarp pun here) About Time is a much better film that it probably has any right to be.
About Time uses the time travel theme quite well and avoids getting bogged down in overcomplicated sci-fi logistics.  The time travel was kept fairly simple which was necessary.
There were plenty of laughs and quite a few giggles yet the tight family unit, which is the heart of the film, provides drama which caused tears to well up on several occasions.
The chemistry between Bill Nighy and Domhnall Gleeson is excellent and they are the perfect father/son combination.  The banter flows quickly yet in the more serious moments their relationship is naturally touching. 
Rachel McAdams seems like a fish out of water however when you look at her romantic drama filled résumé (one of which is a romantic time travelling tale) you wonder who else could have been cast.  McAdams is very understated and her American-Accented-British-Rose performance is very sweet.  Gleeson has proved to be a real find as his chemistry with McAdams was also excellent.
With the idyllic version of London, picturesque Cornwall and even the characters themselves About Time looked gorgeously quaint.  The over-the-top gag about British weather at a wedding summed up the almost caricature setting.
Under normal circumstances About Time is the sort of film I would avoid like a plague but it turned out to be surprisingly enjoyable. 

About Time gets 8/10.  It won’t be purchased on dvd but it will be watched every Christmas from now until the end of time.  This is a bigger compliment than it first appears. 


  1. Typically I avoid these movies like the plague but Richard Curtis did write the rare romantic comedy I actually liked, Notting Hill. Sounds like this is just as good even though I might punch McAdams for being so damn happy all the time....

    1. I avoid them too but this one caught my attention.

      It's not original but the story is very sweet. Gleenson and Nighy are a fabulous double team.

      McAdams is so damn happy but she is good in this. I thought she would seem out of place but she didn't!

      K :-)

  2. Omg I love, love, love Richard Curtis. He wrote all the British rom-coms that I love so much (Notting Hill, Bridget Jones, Four Weddings), The Boat That Rocked was hilarious and yes, I have really seen Love Actually countless times.

    Still, I'm not really excited for this. I'm always interested in time travel themed films, but the trailer for About Time looks just terrible. Not sure if I'll ever see this...

    1. I appreciate that this is probably inappropriate but your love of romantic comedies never fails to amuse me!

      I loved The Boat That Rocked too but I haven't seen it since the cinema. It is always one I mean to get but I forget about it!

      About Time is very sweet but it is more a romantic comedy about a father/son than the son's attempts to get the girl. It is quite different from the trailer!

      K :-)