Last night I was sitting here crocheting, Jack was working on our income taxes, and I was the sole operator of the remote control. I was looking for something to watch on the TV, when I happened upon PBS and Masterpiece Theater’s version of “The Child In Time“.
Now I had read Ian McEwan book many years ago when it was first released. The plot was such, that I felt I probably understood more than many the feelings of the main characters.
The Child In Time follows Stephen Lewis (Benedict Cumberbatch), a children’s author, as he struggles to find purpose in his life after the loss of his daughter. His wife Julie (Kelly Macdonald) has left him and his best friends Charles (Stephen Campbell Moore) and Thelma (Saskia Reeves) have retired to the countryside, battling demons of their own. With tenderness and insight, the film explores the dark territory of a marriage devastated, the loss of childhood, the fluidity of time, grief, hope and acceptance.
I watched the Masterpiece Theater adaptation and I felt myself instantly, thrown back in time, in my own life, when my own daughter Katie, passed from this life, forever changing everyone I know in the process. For the loss of a child is the worst thing that can ever happen to you, and although you eventually find your way through to a new normal, a person is quite simply, never the same.
The acting in “The Child In Time” was amazing. I can see why people have been raving about Benedict Cumberbatch. He really was incredible. He quite literally, was the center of the movie. The supporting cast, was also excellent, not a bad actor among them. I can recommend this movie highly.
But I also recommend the book written by Ian McEwan. Author Christopher Hitchens viewed the novel as McEwan’s masterpiece. Writing about McEwan, Hitchens remarked the break out successes of “Amsterdam” in 1998 and “Atonement” in 2001 and but then said that “The Child in Time” in 1987 was “still, in my view, his masterpiece”.
Having ready nearly all of McEwan’s books now, I can honestly say that “The Child In Time” is my favorite as well. For it touches so many places in ones mind and heart.
So go grab the book, it will not take you long to read through the 220 pages. Or watch for it on your local PBS station.