About Time (I) (2013)
Domhnall Gleeson: Tim
Tim : [voiceover] We're all traveling through time together, every day of our lives. All we can do is do our best to relish this remarkable ride.
Tim : [voiceover] And so he told me his secret formula for happiness. Part one of the two-part plan was that I should just get on with ordinary life, living it day by day, like anyone else.
Tim : [voiceover] But then came part two of Dad's plan. He told me to live every day again almost exactly the same. The first time with all the tensions and worries that stop us noticing how sweet the world can be, but the second time noticing. Okay, Dad. Let's give it a go.
Tim : [voiceover] And in the end I think I've learned the final lesson from my travels in time; and I've even gone one step further than my father did. The truth is I now don't travel back at all, not even for the day. I just try to live every day as if I've deliberately come back to this one day, to enjoy it, as if it was the full final day of my extraordinary, ordinary life.
Tim : [voiceover] There's a song by Baz Luhrmann called Sunscreen. He says worrying about the future is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum. The real troubles in your life will always be things that never crossed your worried mind.
Tim : [voiceover] No one can ever prepare you for what happens when you have a child. When you see the baby in your arms and you know that it's your job now. No one can prepare you for the love and the fear.
Tim : Mum, this is Mary.
Mum : Mary! Good Lord, you're pretty.
Mary : Oh, no. It's just... I've got a lot of mascara and lipstick on.
Mum : Let's have a look.
Mary : [presents her face]
Mum : Oh, yes. Good. It's very bad for a girl to be too pretty. It stops her developing a sense of humor. Or a personality.
[Tim has just learned his dad is dying of cancer]
Tim : It's just... I though with the time thing...
Dad : No, I never said we could fix things. I specifically never said that. Life's a mixed bag, no matter who you are. Look at Jesus: he was the son of a God, for God's sake and look how that turned out.
Tim : I know... You must see I feel a bit cheated.
Dad : Don't. In fact, feel the opposite. The only people who give up work at 50 are the time travelers with cancer who want to play more table tennis with their sons.
Tim : [voiceover] Lesson Number One: All the time traveling in the world can't make someone love you.
Tim : [voiceover] I always knew we were a fairly odd family. First there was me. Too tall, too skinny, too orange. My mum was lovely, but not like other mums. There was something solid about her. Something rectangular, busy and unsentimental. Her fashion icon was the queen. Dad, well, he was more normal. He always seemed to have time on his hands. After giving up teaching university students on his 50th birthday, he was eternally available for a leisurely chat or to let me win at table tennis.
Tim : [voiceover] And then there was mum's brother, Uncle Desmond. Always impeccably dressed. He spent the days just, well, being Uncle Desmond. He was the most charming and least clever man you could ever meet. His mind was on other things, though we never found out what. And then, finally there was Catherine. Katie. Kit Kat. My sister. In a household of sensible jackets and haircuts there was this, well, what can I call her - nature thing. With her elfin eyes, her purple T-shirts and her eternally bare feet. She was then, and still is to me, about the most wonderful thing in the world.
Tim : [voiceover] All in all it was a pretty good childhood. Full of repeated rhythms and patterns. By the time I was 21, we were still having tea on the beach every single day. Skimming stones and eating sandwiches, summer and winter, no matter what the weather.
Tim : [voiceover] And every Friday night a film, no matter what the weather. And then once a year, the dreaded New Year's Eve party...
Tim : So, what do you do?
Mary : I'm a reader at a publisher.
Tim : No! You read for a living?
Mary : Yes. That's it, I read.
Tim : Oh, that's so great. It's like someone asking, "What do you do for a living?" "Well, I breathe. I'm a breather. I get paid for breathing." How did you get that job?
Mary : Okay, smart-ass, what do you do?
Tim : I am a lawyer. Sort of... Sort of.
Mary : That's sexy.
Tim : Is it?
Mary : I mean, I think so. In a suit, in a court, saving people's lives. Kinda sexy.
Tim : I guess it is. Although it's not as sexy as reading. Sitting there in an office in a little chair reading. Ooh!
Mary : Okay, stop. Just wait right there mister, because you know a lot of books get submitted to my publisher. So it's an immense responsibility.
Tim : I bet it is. But when you're doing normal reading,
[they both laugh]
Tim : is it ruined because it's your job? You know, like prostitutes? I always worry that when they stop being prostitutes that they can't enjoy sex anymore.
Mary : You always worry about that?
Tim : No, I sometimes worry about that.
Mary : Oh, okay, good. Because someone who always worried about that would be a bit of a worry.
Tim : When you read a newspaper do you think, "Forget this, it's work"?
Mary : Have you interviewed a lot of prostitutes?
Tim : When you read a menu, do you think, "No, I'm not reading this, unless you pay me hard cash"?
Mary : How many prostitutes will you need to talk to before this issue is solved?
Tim : Never trust a blueberry.
Tim : [voiceover] No one can prepare you for the love people *you* love can feel for them, and nothing can prepare you for the indifferences of friends who don't have babies.
Tim : [voiceover] And so I woke up the next morning. Hungover. Ashamed of myself and not realizing it was the day that would change my life forever.
[Mary wants another baby]
Mary : I just thought that maybe it was time for the insurance baby.
Tim : What?
Mary : In case one of them is really smart. We don't want the other one to feel stupid their whole life. And if we had a third one then we could have *two* happy dummies. What do you think?
[Tim realises that once another baby is born, he will never be able to go back to a time before that]
Tim : [voiceover] It was the toughest decision of my life. Saying "yes" to the future meant saying "goodbye" to my dad - forever.
Tim : [voiceover] For me, it was always going to be about love. And that summer, I walked into the eye of the storm. Her name was Charlotte - cousin of Kit Kat's handsome but nasty boyfriend, Jimmy. And she was staying two whole months.
[Tim and Mary are in bed]
Mary : So not such a bad day after all?
Tim : No. It was pretty good, really. Very good day, actually, as it turns out.
Mary : Well, that's a relief. Because it had been a very bad day, I thought I might have had to have had sex with you to make up for it.
[she turns the light out]
Mary : Goodnight.
Tim : [he is lying blatantly and Mary knows it] It was a very, very bad day. It went very badly. I got fired from my job. And then I killed a man.
[she turns the light back on]
Mary : That is a very bad day.
Tim : It's terrible.
Mary : Yeah, the worst day ever. I'm so sorry.
[they start to make love]
Tim : I know you've probably suspected this, but over the last month, I've fallen completely in love with you. Now, obviously this was going to happen because you're a goddess with that face, and that hair. But even if you didn't have a nice face, and even if you had absolutely no hair because of some bizarre medical reason, I'd still adore you. And I wondered if, by any chance, you might share my feelings?
Charlotte : Wow. Tell you what. Why don't we see how the summer goes, and you ask me again on my last night.
Tim : Your last night?
Charlotte : Yes. Try me on the last night. See what happens then, shall we? It's exciting.
Tim : Right. That's a perfect plan. That's absolutely perfect - last night.
Charlotte : Last night.
Tim : Thanks very much.
Charlotte : Night, night, Timmy.
[Mary is trying on one dress after another, and can't decide which one to wear to a party]
Mary : How about the blue one?
Tim : The first one that you tried on, that was boring and lumpy, but that wasn't actually boring and lumpy, that one?
Mary : Yeah, which do you prefer?
Tim : I don't know. I'm actually starting to go mad.
Mary : I think I like the blue one.
Dad : Tim, my dear son, the... The simple fact is the men in this family have always had the ability to... This is going to sound strange, be prepared for strangeness. Get ready for spooky time, but there's this family secret. And the secret is that the men in the family can travel in time. Well, more accurately, travel BACK in time. We can't travel into the future.
Tim : This is such a weird joke.
Dad : It's seriously not a joke.
Tim : So you're saying that you and granddad, and his brothers could all travel back in time?
Dad : Absolutely.
Tim : And you still do?
Dad : Absolutely. Although it's not as dramatic as it sounds. It's only in my own life. I can only go to places where I actually was and can remember. I can't kill Hitler or shag Helen of Troy, unfortunately.