*BOOK AND MOVIE SPOILERS AHEAD*
As a creator of color, I thought that Black Panther would have hit me the hardest as being a highlight of my year seeing an all black cast, but there was something special about Ava Duvernay’s interpretaion of A Wrinkle in Time. I saw myself more in a Wrinkle in Time than I did in Black Panther. I suppose that is because Ava showed people how to live in the present, while Black Panther showed people what can be imagined and can come to fruition.
Meg is a brown girl with big hair and glasses, just like me.
She has self esteem issues and finds it hard to believe in herself, just like I did/do.
She felt like an oddball in her school because her father was gone, while I was/am one of the few students of color in my classes, both higher level and regular. Still, she felt like an oddball, just like me.
I cried multiple times throughout the movie because it felt like Ava Duvernay wrote a love letter to me, or at least to all girls like me telling me to fight for the light inside me. Telling me not to give into the adversity of the darkness, not to let my faults stop me from believing. To be a warrior.
Meg beautfiullly showed how ‘Impossible’ can be turned into ‘I’m Possible’ as she journeyed through the Universe and into herself. Even as I sit here typing up this post, it is still so startling to think that I saw a regular girl of color in flannel, t-shirt, jeans, and sneakers flying through the stars to tesser and go beyond. It’s a good kind of startled, a good kind of unforgettable, but I also felt disturbed.
I know that sounds crazy, but seeing A Wrinkle in Time and how much I related to Meg, I felt like it was a love letter from Ava Duvernay to girls like me, but it also felt like something bigger that told me to write my story as well as a sign telling me not to give up and not to be discouraged by the negative/lonely things that I experience as a geeky and nerdy girl of color.
Now, onto more specific movie things!
I tried to be a good little book nerd and read all of A Wrinkle in Time before I saw the movie, but given how busy I have been with school, I only got to the part where Meg and the gang found the father, but then they were forced to go meet IT. Then, the father tessered them away and Meg wasn’t able to move while also being ticked that Charles Wallace was left behind.
I thought that I could get through the whole trilogy, but I barely dove into the first book. Because of my fractured and unfinished knowledge of the plot, I was not exactly sure what to expect, but everything was pretty similar to what I had read. The movie did indeed start on a dark and stormy night, which was actually a refreshing cliche, if there can ever be such a thing. People spend so much time avoiding the stereotypes of stories that there are ones that storyteller’s can get away with if they play their cards right. However, since I came from reading and imagining the plot, I was particularly interested to see how Ava interpreted the visualization of it on screen.
A world of light and natural distant skyscrapers of grandeur. Also, there were the gossiping flowers, which were enchanting to look at. I always wondered why living alien things always looked so human or at least relatable to humans and I chalked it up to people not knowing how to bring to life a sentient being that didn’t have the typical features of eyes, nose, mouth, legs, etc. Yet, the flowers chattered in a way that sounded like chimes if I remember correctly and for all their movement, I couldn’t see a face on them. Their petals moved in every direction, but there were no eyes to be seen. These aren’t your flowers from Wonderland. Also, Reese Witherspoon transformed into the most beautiful cabbage dragon thing I have ever seen! (I honsetly don’t know the name of the creature, so she will be cabbage dragon thing. 😂)
When all of the Mrs. appeared in the backyard to get ready to tesser, I was interested to see how wrinkling time would look. It is much like the gif above, but on a larger scale. An effect was applied that made reality warp and wave as if the waves of the ocean or even a watery smoke were flipped vertically and they could be split apart like a curtain in order to step through the fifth dimension. In the backyard scene, all of the objects of reality were disturbed from the trees to the shingles. Everything was rippling as if reality were an ocean and we didn’t realize that we were always in some strange water that we didn’t know how to activate.
Meg had a problem with believing in herself and in the light through most of the movie, which made tessering a painful, frightening, and suffocating experience. Meg’s initial tessering experiences were fractured and messy. Meg’s face looked like it was pressed against a dark blue black latex material and the lighting was dark and cloudy. Everytime she had this experience with tessering she wound up in the next worlds on her back on the ground unable to move, just like in the book. However, at the end when she and the family are about to go home, she has let the light inside of her, as well as allowing her own light to shine.
I found myself thinking of Interstellar (spoilers ahead) and when Mcconaughey’s character had to be ejected from the ship. He was thrust into this geometric complex that held time and memories as if it were in strips of film with stripes of colors. The difference is that the geometric complex in Interstellar had a rigid form that couldn’t be broken, while the free form of Meg’s tessering looked like those strips, but they all had these warm orange, reds, yellows, and even blue. Also, they were flowing through the air, like aerial silks that defied gravity. They also didn’t hold Meg back, but only enhacned her with their own light as well as letting her own light shine. I believe that it was alos telling that there were glimmers of darkness around the strips of light, like when Mrs. Who quoted Rumi “The wound is the place where the light enters you.” It seems as if its meant to say that your scars are beautiful.