While A Wrinkle in Time is a science fiction story with a girl as its protagonist, it should go without saying that children and adults of any gender can enjoy and identify with the time-bending adventure. More than that, however, actor Zach Galifianakis, who plays The Happy Medium (a character who is a woman in the book), gave a very important reason for why boys and young men should definitely see A Wrinkle in Time.
“I think when you’re a stand-up comic, you have a… not a chip on your shoulder, but that’s where you come from and to be involved in such a big, big movie like this, it makes me… I feel real proud,” said Galifianakis during a press conference for the movie held at Hollywood’s W Hotel. Galifianakis got choked up when talking ahout working with director Ava DuVernay and the other cast gathered to create this film.
“I can’t really talk about it without getting emotional. When I first met Ava, there was something about her that made me… I don’t know what it was, emotional,” continued Galifianakis, noting how important that kind of emotionality is, both in life and on-screen. His comments touched on the importance of boys and young men seeing alternate models of masculinity. In A Wrinkle in Time, this manifests in both Happy Medium, a character who isn’t afraid to be emotional, and with Meg Murry’s travel companion, Calvin, a teen boy who is perfectly comfortable following the lead of a teen girl, her little brother, and a bunch of witchly women.
DuVernay notes that Galifianakis was one of the first people who commented on the importance of this film for boys and young men.
“We talk a lot about girls seeing the film, but [Zach] was the first person to say, ‘This is something for boys, too. Boys need to be able to see themselves as vulnerable and themselves being able to follow a girl and not always having to be macho,” said DuVernay.
“It’s nice for young boys and young men to see that it’s OK to have a sensitive side,” said Galifianakis, who noted that, generally, this can lead to teasing. “That [vulnerability] means they’re stronger to me. I wish we could change that. I come from a very masculine upbringing, and a lot of people do, and I’m very happy with… I love the way I was raised, but looking back… We need balance. It’s time for balance. I think that’s what the Happy Medium is about.”
A Wrinkle in Time is now playing.