2009 / Director. Julian Fellowes.
Review by Glenn Cochrane.
FROM TIME TO TIME is a lovely family film, which sadly, won't appeal to many modern kids. It's far too classic for most of today's youthful attention spans and that's really sad to me (I hope that I'm wrong). The story is set in 1944 when a young boy visits his grandmother at her estate in the English countryside. While there he sees ghostly figures from the past and he finds himself able to step through time, witnessing a long-held family mystery, which occurred 200 years prior. Secrets are revealed and old riddles are solved. With the support and belief from his grandmother he explores his family lineage and in turn he starts to process the loss of his father, who up until now he refused to believe was gone. It's a wonderful story told well with a fantastic ensemble of players including Maggie Smith, Timothy Spall, Pauline Collins and Dominic West... amongst others. The film's lead is Alex Etel who previously blew me away with his performance in MILLIONS and WAYS TO LIVE FOREVER (see them now). Films like this are a dime a dozen these days and that makes FROM TIME TO TIME all the more special. Watching it took me back to stories like THE SECRET GARDEN and PLAYING BEATIE BOW, combined with a GOSFORD PARK aesthetic. Director Julian Fellowes is no stranger to this style of period filmmaking, having written GOSFORD PARK, VANITY FAIR, THE YOUNG VICTORIA and DOWNTON ABBEY (to name some). What a lovely film. I hope that there are kids out there who will find its adventure enthralling. I hope that there are kids out there who need more than stupid CGI animals and talking puppies. This is wonderful.