The Time Traveler's Wife

2009-09-17 15:06
 
The Time Traveler's Wife

What it's about:

At the age of six, Henry DeTamble (Eric Bana) vanishes from his mother’s car and appears in his family home weeks earlier. He then discovers that he habitually and uncontrollably time travels, appearing in various places throughout time, only to jump back to his own life. As an adult, he meets Clare Abshire (Rachel McAdams), who claims to have known him her whole life, and they embark on a whirlwind romance that ends with their marriage. After the honeymoon, the reality of Henry’s condition and his frequent absences start to erode their happiness.

What we thought:

Ever since Eric Bana played the angst-ridden Bruce Banner in Ang Lee’s emotionally fraught The Hulk, he has become the thinking woman’s sex symbol – rugged yet sensitive, at home playing characters battling with inner turmoil – a reputation that will be further cemented by The Time Traveler’s Wife.

Eschewing sci-fi conventions of grandiose explanations and visual payoffs, the focus is less on why and how Henry travels, and more on how it impacts his relationship with his wife, who has known him since she was a child. The unexpected and often amusing jumps (Henry always arrives at his destination/new time period sans clothing) give it a quirky charm which nicely offsets the sometimes emotionally draining love story.

Bana plays Henry like a meek and bewildered version of The Hulk. He has no control over his affliction and, despite making the best of it, he lives as an outsider. Before he meets Clare, he accepts his life, but finding a woman who loves him because of his travelling, opens his eyes to a world he thought he would never experience. Even though their affair seems to be the predestined stuff of fairytales, reality creeps in to spoil things. They soon transition from star-crossed lovers to a middle-aged couple with real-life problems and a mortgage, much like the relationship between Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett's characters in the third quarter of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

The film really picks up in the second half, adding mystery and tension that keep things interesting. Some of these elements may put off viewers looking for pure romance, but the time travel premise continues to offer fascinating avenues for the story to explore, as well as providing some very moving moments.

The Time Traveler’s Wife is difficult to pigeonhole, given the mix of sci-fi concepts and relationship drama, but it works well and should appeal to fans of romance and drama alike. The cast do a fine job, but it is the captivating story that really makes the film. Apart from the odd overly soppy moment, it is highly recommended.


A love affair between a woman and a man who involuntarily jumps through time.

VinChainSaw 2009/09/10 10:07 AM
Great plot - go back in time and groom your future wife from the age of six... a paedo's dream.
Sandra 2009/10/20 10:05 PM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
i thought it incredibly boring & full of holes. Neither sci fi, drama or humour. No plot. Must be missing something!
NEXT ON CHANNELX
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.