Time travel rarely makes sense in movies. And in a film that’s more about love and comedy than science fiction, of course it’s not going to make loads of sense. But you know what, it makes enough sense that you don’t really care and just enjoy the film instead. This is not a time travel movie.
Domhnall Gleeson plays Tim, a young, lonely guy who on his 21st birthday is told by his dad that the men in their family can time travel. Pretty crazy right?! Tim uses this to start a relationship with a girl he meets one night, played by Rachel McAdams. He also uses it to try and help some of his family out, but he encounters difficulties with changing certain events and the repercussions that has on his life. A lot of the story might be about Tim and Mary’s relationship, but there’s a whole lot of father son story as well, as that’s where the most emotional parts lie.
The chemistry between Gleeson and his father, Bill Nighy, is great. Nighy is so funny and such a great actor that he sells every little emotion and line he has. Honestly, some of their scenes make me cry some much it almost doesn’t bare thinking about. And the stuff between Tim and Mary works really well too. It’s not so much a typical rom-com where it’s all the guy trying to get the girl, it’s about keeping her and making a happy family. The film doesn’t fall into the tropes and cliches of the genre and takes a few twists in a story that’s all about family relationships.
The cast are all great. Domhnall Gleeson is great as Tim. He goes through so many different emotional changes and he nails all of them. From awkward guy to caring family man. He’s great all the way. McAdams as Mary similarly doesn’t fall into any character archetypes and seems like a normal, well rounded character. Lindsay Duncan is great as Tim’s mother, and Lydia Wilson as his sister also has some great moments. Tom Hollander and Joshua McGuire are great comedic supporting character, but the real MVP of the movie is Bill Nighy. He’s so good that he can have you laughing one second and then crying the next.
Some of that is also due to Richard Curtis’s writing and directing too. Curtis has always had a knack for writing real, relatable and funny characters with charm and emotion and wit and all of those things are on show here. The story takes a few turns from comedy to romance to drama and the whole thing feels very satisfying. He’s such a great writer and director for things like that and this feels like a culmination of stuff from all his previous films.
This is one of those really great films that you get a bit lost in and then when it’s over just sit there going ‘wow!’. I think it is the film I cry at most more than any other film too. For good reasons that is! Funny, emotional and really great. It’s about time (wahey!) you went and watched it.
JACK’S SCORE: 4/5