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The Child in Time (2017)

Not Rated | | Drama | TV Movie 1 April 2018
2:02 | Trailer

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The life of a children's book author is turned upside down when his daughter goes missing.


Julian Farino


Ian McEwan (based on the novel by), Stephen Butchard
2,472 ( 187)



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Benedict Cumberbatch ... Stephen Lewis
Kelly Macdonald ... Julie
Stephen Campbell Moore ... Charles
Saskia Reeves ... Thelma
Andrea Hall Andrea Hall ... Policewoman
Jim Creighton Jim Creighton ... Male Neighbour
Beatrice White Beatrice White ... Kate
Rosa-Marie Lewis Rosa-Marie Lewis ... Shop Assistant
Franc Ashman Franc Ashman ... Lydia Webb
Anna Madeley ... Rachel Murray
John Hopkins John Hopkins ... Home Secretary
Elliot Levey ... Prime Minister
Lucy Liemann ... Joanna Buckley
Natasha Brown Natasha Brown ... Stephen's Younger Mum
Laurence Spellman ... Greg Ellis


Children's author Stephen Lewis is shopping with 4-year old daughter Kate when she suddenly disappears. Failure to find her puts a strain on his marriage, his wife Julie leaving to live in a seaside village, though Stephen regularly visits her. Stephen continues to write but is asked by the prime minister to check on his best friend Charles Dark, who has resigned his cabinet membership to live in an isolated woodland retreat with his wife Thelma. Stephen is perturbed by Charles' apparent regression to childhood, reminding him of his own loss and, returning to London, erroneously believes that another little girl is Kate. Three years after the disappearance Thelma asks Stephen, still keeping Kate's room for her, for help with the increasingly disturbed Charles, leading to a shocking discovery though a later phone call from Julie provides a new beginning for them both. Written by don @ minifie-1

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Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Release Date:

1 April 2018 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Child in Time See more »

Filming Locations:

England, UK

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?


The scene where Kate goes missing was filmed in a supermarket in Crouch End, London, with an uninterrupted public flow. Because of the intense performance in this scene, a real police officer was standing nearby to reassure members of the public that a filming was taking place. See more »


Stephen Lewis: [speaking on a walkie-talkie] Dad to Kate. Dad to Kate. We just wanted to tell you that we love you. Very much. And we miss you. And that we hope to see you very, very soon. Lots of hugs and games, over. Take your time. We'll be here.
See more »

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User Reviews

This film in no way captures the grief of losing a child!
28 September 2017 | by paul-1184See all my reviews

I was at a total loss virtually from the start of this movie. By the end, I was offended by the lack of respect shown to families who've lost a child, and those who've suffered mental illness. Quite an achievement in less than 90 minutes.

A child goes missing. An unthinkable situation for any parent, and for those that have lost a child (whether taken or through them passing) it's of course utterly traumatising. Having supported friends who did lose a child, there were of course periods where they appeared to live life as normal, but for at least two years the overwhelming emotions were deep grief and panic.

This film however seemed to suggest it was less upsetting than having lost your dog - i've seen more emotion shown by friends frantically looking for their pet than was shown by the parents of this lost child. They instead seemed to experience virtually no emotion or grief at all for the majority of the film, and instead just got on with their lives. This is not only totally unrealistic, it is offensive to families who've actually been through this.

Then, to add insult to injury, they also throw in there the complex and devastating problems of mental illness and suicide. Losing a child is clearly not a deep enough subject through which to explore the complexities of human emotion, let's add this to the mix as well!?!

So, all in all, a film that totally fails to convey the difficulty and emotion caused by these deeply traumatic experiences.


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