Sense goes out the window in this sweet, time traveling rom-com. About Time‘s strength derives from its touching father-son relationship and relaxed storytelling as a dad (Bill Nighy) tells his son (Domhnall Gleeson) on his 21st birthday that actually, like all males in the family, you can time travel. ‘What about the butterfly effect?’, questions a shocked son. ‘Well, in all my time, it never seems to have done any harm, best not to worry about it’, comes the reply.
The film puts you firmly into a comfy armchair and asks its audience just to sit back and go along with its plot mechanic for the sake of enjoying the story that’s being told, which actually works rather nicely. Tom Hollander has a standout comic performance as an embittered playwright, which really stole every scene. The romance between Gleeson and McAdams is warm and lightly comic made in the best tradition of Richard Curtis. About Time has some really wonderful, human moments amidst the silly setup that are instantly crushing and emotive, most of which take place between Nighy and Gleeson. It feels like a movie drawn out from the lightest sketch of an idea, but still full of colour and sentiment and really quite lovely.
Review by David Rank
About Time is out now in the UK and out on 8th November in the US. Running time 123 mins. Certificate 12A (UK).