on 17 January 2010
As a fan of the book I was really looking forward to finally watching the film adaptation of Audrey Niffeneger's 'The Time Traveller's Wife', especially as the release date was so frequently postponed. However, though a rather loyal adaptation of the novel, the film is clearly inferior compared to it's original source material, and unable to support itself as a stand alone film.
For those unfamiliar with the story, Henry DeTamble is a self-destructive librarian with a rare genetic disorder which causes him to time travel, with no conscious control of when he leaves, where he goes or how long he stays. Clare Abshire has known Henry since she was a little girl because future Henry often travelled back in time to meet her when she was a child, but when she meets present Henry for the first time he has no idea who she is and begins to fall in love with a girl who has adored him since she was five years old. So begins their life together, and the film follows their relationships through the good and bad times.
I had several problems with the film - one was the pacing which felt all over the place. Large scenes seemed to be cut mercilessly and others just pasted together so there was very little flow to the film. Secondly, there were many very important parts of the novel that were left out of the film and though I am no book purist and fully respect artistic license and the directors ability to pick and choose what he wants to include and change, these were integral parts to each of the characters personalities that needed to be included.
The thing is, this isn't a film with an incredible plot where you can't wait to reach the end to see what happens, Henry and Clare's story in the novel was fascinating because Niffeneger brought life to her characters, they were so complex and 3D that you cared what happened to them and followed them through their lives with interest. However, film Henry and Clare are mere 2D shadows of their book counterparts and as the characters are no longer the driving force of the film, and the plot most defiantely is not the driving force either, the film just feels like a collection of random moments through this unusual couples lives with no real purpose or conclusion.
That's not to say the Time Traveller's Wife is a bad film, but only that it should have been far better. Who knows, maybe they'll do a remake in twenty years time.
on 19 November 2009
I had my reservations about seeing this film, as I haven't read the book and thought that this wouldn't help my overall understanding of a potentially complicated storyline. But don't let this hold you back!!
As the title suggests, the main character is Clare DeTamble (nee Abshire, who is played by Rachel McAdams) who is the wife of time traveler Henry (played by the delectable Eric Bana). The chronology of the film mainly follows Clare's timeline with the help of the occasional flashback, which allows us to keep track of Henry's movements through time. We almost never see him younger than about mid-thirties (apart from one scene, where he is six), though Clare's age ranges from aged six up to 'present day' mid thirties. This is probably evident from the book if you've read it, but if not, like me, then this really helps to keep the story tied down. The story that follows Henry and Clare is gripping and fast moving but without being overwrought and complicated, with no dull bits. The addition of family and friends, who know and don't know about Henry's travelling, further adds to the plot making this a smooth yet complicated series of twists and a thoroughly entertaining and successful film.
Both Rachel McAdams and Eric Bana carry their characters with convincing flare, and this completely makes the film. Had their acting been shoddy, the film would have sufferedand beed extremely hard to follow. The changes in locations were smooth, and even if we were entering from a different angle, the main places were still recognisable. I was worried at the beginning that Henry's behaviour towards the younger Clare would border on grooming, but this was in no way realised and doesn't figure in the development of either character.
Overall this was an amazing film, far better than I had anticipated and very accessable to viewers who haven't read the book. And after seeing such a fantastic film, I shall definitely be reading it!
on 7 January 2010
I read the book a year or so ago and it was such a good read, my favourite book of last year. I have generally been very dissapointed in film versions of books so I approached this with caution but it was probably the best film of a book I have seen. First I should say there is loads missing. There is bound to be, it just can't all be fitted into a film. The film had a different feel to the book but that was okay it was a good feel. I thought the pace was rather quick, the book was much slower and deeper but my wife (who had not read the book) thought the pace was fine. The portrayals in the film are very close to how I imagined Henry and Claire - how did they do that?!! That never happens when I see film versions! I will definitely be getting the DVD I want to see it again.
If you have seen the film, please read the book - you wont regret it. If you have read the book, go see the film and then read the book again. There is no way to get this wrong. I read the book first and my wife saw the film film first. She said the film helped her get her head around the concept of what was happeining and set her up for the book which she loved. The film made me want to read to book again.
Either way enjoy this imaginative and beautifully crafted tale.
on 19 June 2011
Well, I read the book first, and thoroughly enjoyed it. Unputdownable, lol!
Soooo, I wanted to watch the film, but was skeptical, as usually, when I watch a film after I've read the book, I am disappointed, and vice versa.
The film alone is superb. Of course, a lot had to be left out, else the film would have been of epic proportions, but most of the main events are included, the characters are just as I had visualised, and in itself, the film is very enjoyable.
So, this is the first time I have been in this situation, because I loved both, but for different reasons. Like I said, I've been disappointed before when I've watched the film after reading the book, but not so in this case.
For instance, I loved the book, "Ps. I Love You.", but when I saw the film, the book, in my opinion, paled in comparision - I reread the book, and it didn't grip me like it did the first time I read it - The movie is just too good.
Anyway, that's my humble opinion. If you enjoyed reading Time Travellers Wife, I would recommend the movie - Don't expect every event to be covered, but if you forget about the book, and just enjoy the movie for what it is, I am sure you will thoroughly enjoy it :o)
on 18 January 2010
Speaking as somebody who has yet to read the book, I found this to be an incredibly moving and wonderful story, brought beautifully to life by some excellent performances from all involved. The two leads, Eric Bana and Rachel McAdams, deliver incredibly natural and understated performances which make the impossible and nonsensical seem totally believable.
I think this would be a film that most couples could easily enjoy, even the least romantic of partners could still find this interesting if they have a mind and imagination that is open to stories of science fiction or time travel, though there are no dinosaurs, flying saucers or hi-tech computers here! Everything in this story is set within our own lifetime and centres on how the involuntary acts of time travel affect the relationship of the two main characters. There is more than enough here to get you thinking "hmmm, what if?", with some laughs as well as the more moving moments along the way.
I have many favourite points in the film but to discuss them in anyway would only ruin your own enjoyment of the movie, and I think the best way to see this is to know as little as possible before watching it.
In my opinion, this is highly recommended.
If you go from the synopsis, this would appear to be an 'afternoon weepie' of the sort usually put out on Five USA. However, great performances from the leads, and a slow-burning story,raise this well above expectations. Eric Bana is a habitually underrated actor, and this film deserves a wider audience to give him the proper position he undoubtedly deserves. So, don't be put off by the subject or DVD cover, an unusual story, good script and great acting, make this well worth the effort.
on 10 March 2012
This book/movie has been reviewed thousands of times already so I don't expect to say anything new, only to convey that this is a beautiful story. I will admit that I was a tad confused for the first few chapters with jumping backwards and forwards between past, present and future but by the time I understood how Henry's condition worked I as always intrigued to find out where we would find ourselves in the next adventure. It is one of my top 5 favorite books and I can't begin to describe how much I love it. I have named my daughter Alba because I love this book so much (and I do like the name a great deal). I recommend this book to everyone who asks for a good read and have bought all my friends and family copies for either Birthday or Christmas gifts and I have never had any negative comments back for them. It is rare that I say the movie is just as good as the book. I would normally fight to the death that books are the best but in this case I'll admit that it's a great adaptation and I wish I was Rachel McAdams.
Don't borrow it - buy it now, it might just change your life!
on 12 August 2011
This is one of those magical stories that will make you laugh, make you smile, make you feel sad and then before you know it you'll feel tiny tears start to fall down your face.
I adore this story - because for me I cant even imagine being either of the main characters Henry or Clare because their love is always faithful and truly heartfelt by everyone who watches the film, but its torn apart time and time again - but for me the sorrow only makes makes it stronger...
One of the greatest films i have ever watched, pure beauty.
Great Respect to Rachel McAdam's who plays Clare as if were herself in real life, and Eric Bana who is simply marvelous as The Time Traveler. Both characters played amazingly, therefore I shall never forget the story.
I adore Audrey Niffenegger for creating a story that has captured my heart! x
Buy this DVD, you won't ever regret it!
on 2 May 2014
This is romance as it used to be, and I enjoyed it (over and over again) very much. It has become one of my favourites (up there with Close Encounters, Starman, Meet Joe Black and City of Angels).
Inevitably, you couldn't possibly have the whole 500+ pages of the book redone as a film, so some material had to be left out. I vote one out of two for this retelling. Firstly, and thankfully, in the book there is a horribly misplaced and unnecessary sex scene on a kitchen table which doesn't appear in the film. I'm no prude, but when I got to that, thankfully, very small part of the book, I was more than a little surprised, because nothing else in the book had that smutty tone. (It was almost as though somebody in the editorial department had said to Niffenegger that they needed just a little spice to help it sell. It was completely out of place, and I was pleased to see that it wasn't shown in the film.)
On the minus side, the ending in the book was so, so much better than the film; I had to reread it just to make sure I'd not made it all up.
That said, it's a wonderful film, and I'd seriously recommend it to anyone who has a heart and likes a drop of time travel. I'd say as a word of caution to anyone who has neither read the book nor seen the film, that you'd possibly be better off reading the book first, as the time sequences could be a little confusing in the film; the book spells it all out and, after getting used to the presentation, everything seems quite normal.
Oddly, even after reading the book, this film left me with one question that I needed answering: whatever happened next with Alba? I know with Starman they made a TV mini series - I felt this could also have been done with this material.
on 5 May 2016
I quite liked it, reminds me of the times when I used to time travel, but it's getting so busy now doing it, so many people about, but it gets me away from the wife for a few minutes, No hold on I am getting confused, it's when I go down the pub, mind you these days you have to time travel to find a pub as the pubs are dissapearing.