It comes as no surprise that the man who wrote Four Weddings and a Funeral and Bridget Jones’ Diary and directed Love Actually is back with a romantic comedy. About Time is a romance loaded with sentimentality like we rarely see anymore in film. Despite the fact that it is far from perfect with all its mishandling of the time travel elements (what is our obsession with time travel in films over the past few years?) it is a hard film not to like because of all the sweetness and warm feelings involved.
Curtis seems to just be using time travel as just a plot device rather than trying to present it as something real or even possible. He does not allow things to bog down in the details of it all. Rather he just focuses on his love story and the father-son relationship. While Gleeson and McAdam are watchable and believable as a couple the relationship that really affected me was that between Nighy and Gleeson. Their chemistry is great and the brilliant but woefully underrated Nighy is his usual sublime self.
Life and love delivered in a funny and intelligent way. Meaning there is some depth to it. More than you go in expecting anyways. I was really moved and touched by the underlying theme of living your life to its fullest. The balance between comedy and drama is expertly handled by Curtis and his cast. It is subtle and never preachy and more impressively is poignant without becoming overly sentimental.
There is a saying that goes “like father, like son” and such is the case in About Time. Tim (Domnhall Gleeson) lives in London and works as a lawyer. His father (Bill Nighy) and mother live in Cornwall. Dad has passed down something very unique to his son. All the males in the family can travel through time. They cannot alter history but they can change the outcome of their own lives. Tim, a plain looking ginger, uses his “ability” to improve his love life and in the end comes out of it with a beautiful wife named Mary (Rachel McAdam). Tim and Mary have a couple of kids together and are generally happy though Tim realizes that his time traveling does not completely eliminate the trials and tribulations and heartaches of life.