If you get a chance, I highly recommend the British movie “About Time,” which is filled with so many Mormon themes you would swear the writers were LDS.
The movie is about a British family in which the men are time travelers. They can only travel back in time (not into the future). The awkward son in the family Tim Lake (Domhnall Gleeson) discovers this on his 21st birthday. Of course he is skeptical, but he is told to go to a dark closet, make fists to concentrate and imagine a time in his life that he would like to change, and –voila! — he is taken back in time. He says he will use his new power to find a girlfriend.
Here are some of the surprising Mormon themes:
–The time travelers appear completely uninterested in earning money with their powers. The very down-to-Earth father warns that pursuing money has made past family members very unhappy.
–They only use this power for small things involving their relationships with much-loved family members. (They show no interest in changing large, world-affecting events).
–The father played by the great Bill Nighy reveals that he primarily uses time travel to 1)spend time with his family 2)read good books 3)learn to appreciate life by reliving days twice, adopting a positive attitude the second time around. Tim does this, and we discover the age-old adage that it is not what happens to you, it is how you respond to what happens to you.
–Tim is very seriously involved with Mary (Rachel McAdams) but has a chance to hook up with a gorgeous past love (Charlotte, played by Margot Robbie). She invites him into her apartment, and Tim realizes he really is in love with Mary, and he literally runs away from Charlotte to avoid temptation. This scene would make a great young men’s lesson on chastity: infidelity is not worth it.
–Tim believes in marriage and in fidelity throughout his life. He is completely focused on Mary and has no interest in another woman. (Imagine how many Hollywood movies would show him fooling around with other women).
–Tim wants to have an unusually large (for modern Europe) number of children (three). He does this despite the fact that his friends and most people around him spend their time saying they are not interested in children.
The primary theme of the movie is completely aligned with David O. McKay’s statement that “no success can compensate for failure in the home.” Given all of the infidelity, violence and ugliness that is glorified in movies these days, “About Time” was a nice surprise.
A few warnings: unfortunately, this movie has a few unnecessary F-bombs and S-bombs. It is also worth pointing out that there are a few sexy scenes and that the main characters do hop into bed almost immediately, so this movie may not be appropriate for children and some younger teenagers. But overall, a very well-done movie.