Earlier this week I headed to the Champs Elysées for a late showing of the new Richard Curtis film, About Time. We learn about a young man, Tim, (Domhnall Gleeson) his family, his childhood in idyllic Cornwall, and the new year’s day that would change his life. His father (the brilliant Bill Nighy) informs him of the very special trait that runs through the men in their family; the ability to time travel. By finding a small, dark space and clenching his fists, he is now able to travel back to any moment in his own life and he uses this ability, of course, to bag a girl. After a couple of false starts he finally falls for Mary (Rachel McAdams), and manages to secure her love as well. And they lived happily ever after.
I liked the concept of this film. Time travel has been through many guises and though Curtis is not too bothered about following his own time travel rules, it serves as a great vehicle for his message. We are left wondering what we might go back and change if we could, and seeing Tim figure out how to enjoy life in his carefree, childlike manner we are ultimately reminded to live every day to its fullest, to see the beauty of life in the little things.
I found the acting impeccable, and especially loved Bill Nighy’s performance as the wise father. The father and son relationship was particularly touching and yet somehow I, a confirmed cryer, sitting there prepared with my tissue in hand, didn’t shed a tear at their heart-wrenching final scene together. I was slightly choked up, but something about the film had left me feeling a bit cold.