11:23pm PT by Abid Rahman, Hilary Lewis
'A Wrinkle in Time' Sparks Mixed Reactions Following Premiere
The world premiere of A Wrinkle in Time sprinkled a little magic on Hollywood on Monday night, with those in attendance quickly taking to social media to share their thoughts about the Ava DuVernay–directed film.
The El Capitan Theatre in Los Angeles hosted the first public screening of the Disney fantasy epic, an adaptation of Madeleine L'Engle's beloved 1962 novel.
The film stars Storm Reid as middle schooler Meg Murry, who must go on a mission to find her missing father (Chris Pine). Meg gets help from three celestial beings named Mrs. Which (Oprah Winfrey), Mrs. Whatsit (Reese Witherspoon) and Mrs. Who (Mindy Kaling).
The film, which hits theaters on March 9, is the first time a woman of color has helmed a movie with a budget of more than $100 million and comes hot on the heels of the runaway success of Marvel Studios' Black Panther, which has earned more than $707 million worldwide since opening Feb. 16 and is being heralded as an important cultural moment thanks to its Africa-inspired storyline and diverse cast.
Formal reviews for A Wrinkle in Time do not drop until March 7, but the social media reaction following Monday night's premiere seemed to be mixed.
There were gushing notices for Wrinkle's visual effects from Black Girl Nerds founder Jamie Broadnax, and actress Jurnee Smollett-Bell had high praise for Storm Reid in the lead role. Queen Sugar showrunner Kat Chandler gave a general effusive thumbs-up to the film. Issa Rae praised the film in a video posted to an Ava DuVernay fan Twitter account. Roxane Gay was also a fan.
My second viewing of #WrinkleInTime and it was beautiful to watch and witness! The visual effects were groundbreaking and I loved the performances from these actors. Kids and adults will love and appreciate this film!— Jamie “I Am Meg Murry” Broadnax (@JamieBroadnax) February 27, 2018
Very emotional after seeing #WrinkleInTime. All I can say is @stormreid is a powerhouse! brought me to tears!! RUN TO SEE THIS FILM!!! Thank you @ava and Disney for giving little girls everywhere a superhero. #BeAWarrior— jurnee smollett (@jurneesmollett) February 27, 2018
Now that I can tell you, I really enjoyed #WrinkleInTime. @ava's made a gorgeous film that's full of emotion and wonder.— Geek Girl Diva (@geekgirldiva) February 27, 2018
As someone who lost her father at 11 years old, certain things really resonated & I found myself crying multiple times.
Everything about #WrinkleInTime got me— CrabbyAshley (@CrabbyAshley) February 27, 2018
Guys, #WrinkleInTime is absolutely AMAZING! Seeing it for the second time last at the @ElCapitanThtre with the entire cast was spectacular! If you get a chance to see it twice, I highly suggest it! #WrinkleInTimeEvent #BeAWarrior #DisneyPartner https://t.co/RIMb6SGJ5j— Victoria (@SimplyTodayLife) February 27, 2018
We went to the @WrinkleInTime premiere tonight. What a lovely, gorgeously shot, inspiring movie. Absolutely go see it.— roxane gay (@rgay) February 27, 2018
Loved the message and story from the book and love how @ava transformed it for the big screen. Also, it was heartwarming seeing other directors like Ryan Coogler and JJ Abrams show their support at the premiere. #WrinkleInTime— Kirbie Johnson (@kirbiejohnson) February 27, 2018
I loved the movie. Obviously super kid-centric, but like many Disney movies has the emotional pull to tug at the adult heartstrings. People definitely cried. #wrinkleintime— Kirbie Johnson (@kirbiejohnson) February 27, 2018
#WrinkleInTime blew up my mind. I may or may not shed a tear. Actually more than one.Visually stunning, emotional.Stayed until the very last of the ending credits to enjoy ‘Flower of the Universe’ by Sade.— AvaDuVernay Fans (@avaduvernayfans) February 27, 2018
Hands down to this cast to @ava , @JimWhitaker and the awesome team. pic.twitter.com/XoVIaVsrpC
The @WrinkleInTime premiere— Keri Lyn Renner (@SheSaved) February 27, 2018
Of all the events that I have covered, the cast of this one moved me the most..AMAZING good good people here! @Oprah @Ava @mindykaling @RWitherspoon Take your inner child to see this film March 9! #WrinkleInTimeEvent #wrinkleintime #DisneyPartner pic.twitter.com/9Ol8zgF5UB
However, film reviewers such as Cinema Blend's Conner Schwerdtfeger, Gregory Ellwood of ThePlaylist.net and @Fanboynation's Sean Mulvihill felt that DuVernay made a valiant attempt to adapt an unfilmable novel, but ultimately fell short.
So #WrinkleInTime is visually ambitious and very faithful to the source material. However, it’s also kind of all over the place and doesn’t quite land the themes of the book.Chris Pine is a standout & Ava DuVernay deserves credit for what she does with a nearly unfilmable novel— Conner Schwerdtfeger (@ConnerWS) February 27, 2018
It’s a film that has no flow whatsoever. There are moments late in the film when it comes alive a bit, but it’s not enough.— Sean Mulvihill (@MessEnScene) February 27, 2018
Since embargo is up...saw A Wrinkle In Time...it's intentions are noble, but this adaptation doesn't work. Movie has a ton of issues. Loved the Sade and Demi Lovato songs tho. Looking forward to what Ava does next.— GregoryEllwood - 4 Quadrant on iTunes (@TheGregoryE) February 27, 2018
And some reactions were less forgiving.
The problem with people today is that we can’t just be REAL about certain topics because it seems like we are “negative” or a “hater” but I believe in telling the truth. With that being said, #WrinkleInTime will not top #BlackPanther in sales. It was a total flop!— Christian D. Green (@chrisdgreen423) February 27, 2018