Having written and directed the overly sappy yet entertaining Love Actually and writing many of the very similar British rom coms of the last decade Curtis’ third attempt at combining both writing and directing is a home run.”
When Tim (Domhnall Gleeson) turns 21 his father (Bill Nighy) lets him in on a family secret, that the men of the family have the ability to travel back through time and alter the events which have shaped their lives to date. The clear and obvious response he gets from Tim is one of utter disbelief but that happens to change very quickly when Tim takes his Dad’s advice and makes a change. When he’s asked what he’s going to do with this gift he informs his father he’s going to find a girlfriend. Simple, but undoubtedly important to Tim. Finding love proves easier than expected and his life takes off from there as he continues to make every moment perfect with Mary (Rachel McAdams) the love of his life.
Not just a time travel movie and not just a rom-com it has a few different elements, but mostly it’s non-stop entertaining. The set pieces are all funny and so are the characters who are delivered by such a wonderful cast it’s hard to believe that even with very little to do they can be so memorable. Gleeson has come into his own here and it’s great that it’s not all the one trick, drippy, love sick Hugh Grant type character that we’ve seen before. Nighy seems to be a Curtis favourite and he delivers for him here with both funny and tender moments. Rachel McAdams doesn’t really do anything special but she’s not crap and the support cast are great throughout, especially the by underrated Tom Hollander (see In the Loop). The pace is sweet from start to finish with the simple things introduced at the beginning leaving more time for love and everything that it must go through.
More than just a standard rom com, About Time has buckets of heart and will most likely make you cry. Lads, make sure you go with your girlfriend or your mates will be laughing at you as they endeavour to hide their own tears.