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A WRINKLE IN TIME ( Movie Review )

It was a dark and stormy night.

Meg Murry knows all about such nights. In a way, her life's been an endless dark, stormy night for the last four years, ever since her father disappeared.

He never even said goodbye.

Maybe he couldn't. The NASA scientist was working on something big—exploring the concept of the tesseract, a so-called "wrinkle in time" where space folds in on itself, allowing rapid transit between stars, constellations, maybe whole galaxies.

Perhaps Mr. Murry found a way to make the tesseract work. Perhaps he was sent by the government on a daring mission. Perhaps. Or perhaps Mr. Murry simply … left. Gossips speculate that Mr. Murry tired of his wife and children and deserted them.

For Meg, the reason doesn't much matter. Her father's gone, and she's never been the same. She lashes out at school, fights with her classmates. She feels awkward and ugly and desperately unintelligent. On the anniversary of her father's disappearance, someone sticks a note on her locker: "Happy anniversary," it says. "If only you'd disappear too!"

Back at home, Meg goes downstairs and finds her younger brother, Charles Wallace, heating up milk. Always good to be prepared, he says. Sure enough, Meg's mother soon comes down, and there's enough milk for her, too. Then there's a knock on the door.

In traipses a rather alarming red-haired woman wearing a gown made from, it appears, stolen sheets. She's a strange one, she is, and a stranger to boot—a stranger to everyone, apparently, but young Charles Wallace. He calls her Mrs. Whatsit.

She visits for a spell, tossing off strange little sentences here and there, admitting that wild, stormy nights like this are her glory. But before she departs, she turns to Mrs. Murry and says, "By the way, there is such a thing as a tesseract."

Then she's gone, leaving the gaping Mrs. Murry behind.

Meg doesn't know it just yet, but she's just taken her first step on a galaxy-spanning adventure involving herself, Charles Wallace, a popular boy from school named Calvin and three of the strangest women Meg's ever seen. If all goes well, they might just rescue Meg and Charles Wallace's father. Oh, and save the universe while they're at it.

But it won't be easy: Many a dark and stormy night is on its way.

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