The Time Traveler’s Wife–Movie Review

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4 Stars
Henry DeTamble (Eric Bana) has a problem: a time travel disorder. Every so often he has something like a epileptic seizure which causes him to vanish from the present and appear somewhere and sometime in the past or the future. He has no control over it. To make things even more inconvenient, he always arrives naked.

One day a pretty girl (Rachel McAdams) walks up to him and acts like she knows him. Apparently his future self has gotten acquainted with her during visits to the past. He has no idea who she is, but she claims that he is her best friend.

The Time Traveler’s Wife can be appreciated as a bittersweet romance, but what really appeals to me is the dexterity with with it handles the time travel paradoxes.

Most movies about time travel just pull a resolution out of the air without much concern for whether it actually makes sense. This movie on the other hand is a meticulously plotted tour de force in the tradition of Robert Heinlein’s “By His Bootstraps”. As in that classic story the ground rules are totally deterministic, so there is ultimately no ambiguity about whether the convoluted plotline is workable or not. In this case it works.