The Time Traveler's Wife 2009

Critics score:
38 / 100

Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes

Ben Mankiewicz, At the Movies: I thought really very little in the film worked. Read more

Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune: The emotions and crises feel pre-sanded, smooth to the point of blandness. The transitional disappearances are routine. Read more

Kathleen Murphy, MSN Movies: The movie moves fast, as though to distract you from these shortcomings and the nearly total absence of logic. Read more

Manohla Dargis, New York Times: Often ridiculous, awkward, unsatisfying and dour melodramatic adaptation. Read more

Christy Lemire, Associated Press: We're left wondering afterward, how do these people feel about this extraordinary situation in which they've found themselves? Read more

David Edelstein, New York Magazine/Vulture: I'm over the moon about this movie, which smooths out the psychological dissonances in Audrey Niffenegger's fine novel but is still an emotional workout. Read more

Joanne Kaufman, Wall Street Journal: The movie moves at such an agonizingly stately pace that by the end, side effects be damned, Henry's time-traveling gene starts to look mighty appealing. Read more

Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times: Suspend your disbelief and you might find The Time Traveler's Wife a charming if mildly depressing fantasy. Or you might, as I did, travel elsewhere during it. Either way, at least it's a picturesque journey. Read more

Tasha Robinson, AV Club: The problem isn't the timeline -- it's everything else. Read more

Ty Burr, Boston Globe: The Time Traveler's Wife is told with a tenderness that's unusual in a major motion picture but that leads mostly to dullness. Read more

Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor: I'll let you in on a little secret that film critics have known for years. A major studio production, released in August with top-list stars, is almost certain to be a gobbler. Read more

Adam Graham, Detroit News: The fact that Bana is a bit of a cold fish and real sparks never really ignite between he and McAdams, who is 10 years his junior, doesn't help matters. Read more

Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly: The Time Traveler's Wife is built as a game that the audience learns to play, and after a while, yes, we do get the hang of it. Read more

Eric D. Snider, Succinctly establishes the world it takes place in, then lets us experience, to some extent, the feelings and emotions that would naturally occur in such a world. Read more

Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times: Yet where there should be heat, a cold wind blows. Read more

Connie Ogle, Miami Herald: McAdams and Bana are enticing as a couple whose domestic problems are distinctly original. Read more

Stephen Whitty, Newark Star-Ledger: The whole thing feels arbitrary. Henry and Clare's love is bedeviled not by anything they've done or have any control over, so the drama fails to build. Read more

Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News: It's hard to live in stolen moments, but trying to find a few enjoyable ones in The Time Traveler's Wife is nearly impossible. Read more

Kyle Smith, New York Post: A Twilight Zone premise written like a Mariah Carey song, The Time Traveler's Wife is destined for a warm welcome on an obscure cable network. The Spinster Movie Station? The Lonely Hearts Channel? Read more

Rex Reed, New York Observer: Maybe the novel by Audrey Niffenegger, which a number of people seem to have read and enjoyed, was more convincing, but the unsatisfactory, yo-yo script by Bruce Joel Rubin, makes no real effort to explore the inner emotions of the characters. Read more

Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel: An elegy to love, fate, loss and free will, The Time Traveler's Wife is to science fiction what Twilight is to vampire tales -- a femme-centric exploration of relationships wrapped in genre fiction. Read more

Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer: A kooky, head-spinning romantic mess. Read more

James Berardinelli, ReelViews: The book is richer, but this is a solid, endearing telling of the same essential story, and is well worth the price of admission for those who appreciate romantic fantasy. Read more

Richard Roeper, Richard Buy the book. Read more

Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times: If you allow yourself to think for one moment of the paradoxes, contradictions and logical difficulties involved, you will be lost. The movie supports no objective thought. Read more

Peter Travers, Rolling Stone: I'd watch the vibrant Rachel McAdams and Eric Bana in anything, but The Time Traveler's Wife is pushing it. Read more

Stephanie Zacharek, There's not much [McAdams] or Bana can do to rescue this dreary piece of romantic hooey. Read more

Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle: It takes, as its subjects, the sadness and grandeur of life and the mystery of time, and it offers a full experience to those who find its wavelength. Read more

Dana Stevens, Slate: Long spans of time pass between lines of dialogue, many of which seem to have been inexpertly translated from a foreign language so that they almost make sense but not quite. Read more

Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune: An uninspired alternative to comic book pandemonium and solemn family dramas, a gloppy serving of late summer corn. Read more

Rick Groen, Globe and Mail: Romance is robbed of its gamble, stripped of its suspense, shorn of its mystery, and deprived of an ending that feels earned. Read more

Peter Howell, Toronto Star: If you can get past the calendar gymnastics, The Time Traveler's Wife plays as an affecting allegory of love that persists even when the lover is gone. Read more

Richard Corliss, TIME Magazine: For viewers aching for a romantic drama that leaves them emotionally, honorably exhausted, this could prove a total immersion in star-crossed love, if not perfect synchronicity. Read more

David Fear, Time Out: That the actors can pull off such Oprah-friendly, sci-fi-inflected sap and keep straight faces is the most fantastic thing about this loopy love story. Read more

Claudia Puig, USA Today: The Time Traveler's Wife tries to transcend time and place, but it ultimately becomes bogged down in details. Read more

Justin Chang, Variety: Fairly irresistible nonsense. Read more

Nick Pinkerton, Village Voice: This thoroughness may impress fans of the bestseller source novel, but will disappoint anyone looking for transport from a movie -- being a time traveler's wife, it turns out, is mostly a drag. Read more

John Anderson, Washington Post: What makes The Time Traveler's Wife work as drama, and certainly better than it might have, is an unhesitating emotional commitment on the part of the actors. Read more