Richard Curtis strikes gold once again with his time traveling romantic comedy. In the same vein as Love Actually / Noting Hill / Four Weddings, About Time stands shoulder to shoulder with Curtis’s other outings. This one however does not star Hugh Grant, though, the lead,
Domhnall Gleeson (son of Brendan) does his best Hugh Grant impression throughout, so his spirit is still there.
The time traveling aspect isn’t ironically the central theme, but instead a mechanism to let us explore some of life’s major decisions, wondering what would have happened if you made a different choice.
Tim (Gleeson) when he is 21, is told of a special gift the men of his family have from his father played by the excellent
Bill Nighy. This gift is the ability to travel back to any point of time for a short period within their own time line. Anything they change there will have an impact on the current timeline.
Let us be clear, the time travel rules here are not really thought out and frequently if you were to look closely they are broken. But the point is, this is not a BackToTheFuture or DoctorWho. The time travel device is there to help with the story.
This humor in this story is just perfect. The supporting cast is top notch, and as always have equally as good of lines to add to the overall narrative. However this Curtis movie differs from the other ones in the heart jerking story line. I challenge anyone to watch this movie without shedding at least one tear. Sure Four Weddings and a Funeral had a death (hence the funeral part) but it was sad, not tearful.
I have watched it many times and every time it gets me. It is a movie that reminds you to be thankful for those around while you still have them, and done in a non patronizing manner. This is a pure father and son story weaved around a typical family, with their every day problems presented in a very believable manner.
About Time is in my usual rotation and comes out every so often when the time calls for it. A true classic that I missed in the cinema, but have made up for it since.
#87 in the series
Friday, 13th November 2015 (Richmond)