So last night I had the pleasure of seeing an advance screening of The Child In Time, and a lot of people have been asking my thoughts on it. So, here they are (spoiler free of course).
The Child In Time is not your usual TV drama. As Benedict said in his Q&A, the lines between cinema and television are incredibly blurred now and this film is proof of that.
It’s cinematic in its scope, in an arthouse movie style I think. It’s atmospheric, the sights and sounds pulling you in — sometimes it can be loud and in your face and other times its so silent all you can hear is Benedict’s breath. It’s got a gorgeous palette of colours, earthy and natural, the only bright colour offered by the pretty coats Kate is seen in.
For me, it’s a study in longing. Longing for what’s lost, longing for what could be, the joy and pain of longing, the restraint of it. All the things unsaid.
The little girl who plays Kate is beautiful and perfect, she has a laugh that will melt you, and when she is in scene there is life. When she is not, there’s an emptiness which is unscripted and organic and palpable. You can’t escape the emptiness, and that’s a tremendous credit to both Benedict and Kelly in every scene they’re in - either alone or together.
Other characters in the piece have important roles to play, and have tales of their own, especially Stephen’s friend, Charles, played by the frankly outstanding Steven Campbell Moore . Without giving anything away, I found myself having to push any questions aside and just take what was playing out in front of me on its face value. You’ll know what I mean when you see it for yourself. It is, from a conditioned adult’s point of view, a bit weird. But it actually complements the story of the main protagonists.
I know most people have said “Oh I am going to cry, pass the tissues” and they’re right. There are moments in the film where you will, because your heart breaks for those left behind, and you can’t help but share in their grief. But there are also several moments of light to balance out some of the shade. You’ll laugh, and you’ll smile, and your heart will be warmed. Because when you boil It down, it’s a love story.
Overall, it’s beautifully made, beautifully done, thought-provoking and powerful. And above all a message of hope.
And for those shallow fans (I raise my hand as one) Benedict is staggeringly beautiful. Staggering. Enjoy every close up of his face, and also the rather delectable shot of him asleep on his bed in his suit ;)
was aware of a woman’s hand, soft and warm, on forehead. A voice in halting
English advising him to be still, be quiet, the Germans will hear, do not make
a sound please please please. He was aware of the smell of
yeast, of the cloying perfume of rich wine, of damp wood, of smoke, and a
sweet, flowery scent that could only belong to a woman. To those soft hands.
is your name?” the soft, lilting accent of southern France. He’d vacationed
there once with his family, with Robb and Father and—they’re
both dead now. “Can you speak?”
Snow,” he managed to rasp over a throat as raw as dried tinder.
I’m still terrified of ending up in a marriage with a guy that put on the front of being chill with me as I am but makes a 180 as soon as the relationship is Official and then it’s too late to turn back and youre stuck with a psychopath that expects you to alter yourself to appease his every whim while spending your whole life keeping his violent outbursts at bay
I’m scared of clowns. Spiders. The dark. I’m scared of swaying bridges, of abseiling backwards off tall objects, and of throwing up in public. I’m scared of messing up. Disappointing people. Not being good enough.
But more than any of that, I’m scared of how strong my feelings are for you. I’m scared I’ll never feel this way again. Scared that I will.