Time Now: A Lesson in Forging Your Own Path

As a person who has gone through a childhood full of neglect from their mother, I would like to tell you that no matter how hard I tried to dislike the woman through the years, I continue to attempt to gain her approval. Maybe that’s why I connected so much with Spencer King’s Time Now, and its examination into how much we lose ourselves when trying to gain the acceptance of our parents.

Warning, the following will have spoilers for the film Time Now. It is highly recommended that you go and view the film before reading.

Helen (Jeannine Thompson) stairs down her daughter.

Time Now follows Jenny (Eleanor Lambert), who is the oldest in a set of triplets, as she returns to her estranged home when her brother, Victor (Sebastian Beacon), gets killed in a car accident. This is not the first time Jenny has lost a brother. The third triplet, Andrew, was killed sometime before the events of the film.

Flashbacks show us the pressure that was placed on Jenny to be the protector of her two brothers even at a young age. When young Jenny tries to ask why, her mother just avoids the question entirely. It’s clear even at that moment that her mother’s mental health is probably not at its best. Jenny’s mother reminds me a lot of my own. Both of these women have an illusion of what they wanted their lives to be but tend to close themselves up when being faced with what they have. They both also didn’t handle the trauma of losing a child well and instead placed their own guilt of what happened on their eldest daughter.

Placing this job on a child at such a young age deeply affects their later development. Jenny is led to believe that she must continuously place her brothers’ well-being before her own. She is made to believe that if anything were to happen to them then she would be the one who failed because it is her responsibility to look after them. All this because she came out only moments before them.

My mother made me in charge of absolutely everything when it came to my younger siblings. If they were outside I was the one who had to look after them and make sure they didn’t get in trouble. When my parents wanted to go out, I was the one left to look after them instead of a babysitter (at least once I hit preteen age).

This is not our job as the oldest siblings. We are not bodyguards. We are children. Children who deserve to be able to have an actual childhood without having to grow up years before we are meant to. This is why when Jenny’s mother basically ends up blaming her for the death of Andrew, Jenny continues to believe far into her adulthood. The guilt rises again when she isn’t there for Victor’s death because by this time she has gone and moved far away in order to have her own life.

Joan (Claudia Black), Jenny (Eleanore Lambert) and Little Andrew attend church.

It’s clear when she returns that she has attempted to heal and to move on, but as someone who can say with experience, the minute you are put back into a situation such as a broken home old habits begin to resurface. It’s healthy to see Jenny have a relationship with her Aunt Joan (Claudia Black). To have at least one person in your family be there for you, and to give you the love that your parents won’t, works to a point in being able to help forge healthy bonds.

Watching Jenny’s dynamics with her family in Time Now was really like looking into a mirror. I don’t have a strong relationship with my mother, but to make up for that I always had a strong relationship with my aunt. Joan treats Jenny pretty much like her own. She makes sure she has a place to stay, acknowledges Jenny’s need for self-care, and takes her son for the night so she could get some. Joan seems to be the emotional rock for Jenny just as my aunt has been with me. It’s actually refreshing to see the niece and aunt relationship play out in a film, and have it be as close as a mother and daughter relationship. I really feel that those relationships don’t get any representation when it comes to the media, and as someone who deeply benefited from my relationship with my aunt I was extremely happy to see one play out.

Yet, as I’ve said above, this is a film about failing to know your boundaries and unfortunately for Jenny, the second she returns home and has her mother telling her that she had no right to name her own son after her brother, Jenny is forced back into that little corner she was placed in after Andrew’s death. Being made to feel as though you haven’t done enough when it comes to your family really becomes a burden. You start to find yourself doing things you wouldn’t have done before in hopes that it will get you noticed.

There had been countless times where I had attempted to tell my mother of performances I was doing at school, or even about the writings I’ve done for this very site. The excitement in her is completely forced and then she forgets just moments later. She is the type of person to make it all about her and if you don’t then you become her worst enemy.

Jenny was told at a young age that it was her duty to look after both of her brothers because she was the one born first. When Andrew was killed, her mother completely shut down and that closeness shared between them disappeared. With Victor’s death, Jenny suddenly felt as though it was her responsibility to unearth what happened.

She begins to throw herself into Victor’s world and along the way forms relationships with his girlfriend Tania (Paige Kendrick) and his “brother from another mother” Kash (Xxavier Polk). Her self guilt begins to manifest itself as dreams featuring cameos from both of her dead siblings. She interprets these dreams as messages about how she needs to uncover the truth so she digs deeper. As she goes more into Victor’s world and begins the uncover what happened, the more she begins to lose herself. She becomes willing to throw everything away in order to make things right.

Tanja (Paige Kendrick) and Jenny (Eleanore Lambert) look at a piece of art at a party.

Even though this is marketed as a horror film, Time Now really stands more as a melodrama. The true horror in this film is in its final moments when Jenny returns to her aunt’s house after having just killed Kash. Even though he attempted to plead with her and tell her how much he regretted Victor’s death she still finds it in herself to commit the crime. Jenny yearns so much for her mother’s approval that she will throw everything away and kill for her. She fully believes that if she does this then her mother will forgive her. Yet, she arrives back only to find her mother still avoiding her gaze and it’s at that moment that it hits her—nothing she was ever going to do was going to appease that woman. She basically just threw her life away for a hope that was never going to come. 

Time Now shows us the harsh reality that many of us who come from broken homes constantly face. It shows us that no matter how hard we try to gain acceptance from our broken family members, it’s healthier for us to just try to be content with ourselves. We yearn for that moment when one day our neglectful parents will prove us wrong. We constantly put ourselves at risk in getting that approval when in reality we are really just causing ourselves more harm. Sometimes you just have to “do the things that make you happy” and the rest will fall into place.

Written by Katie Bienvenue

Katie is a writer, cosplayer, craftswoman, and Barista. When she isn't talking about Chainmaille she is usually found discussing some television series, film, or how to properly make one's latte.


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  1. If I could read your articles endlessly, I would do it endlessly. Because it’s interesting and educational. I think that you have written a wonderful post, thank you for every line, every letter in this line. This is amazing

  2. To tell the truth, “Time Now” has been in my list of films that I want to watch but after reading your article my desire became stronger and now I’m sure that I will pay attention to this movie. This film has such a deep meaning and such important topics are revealed there. I really like the idea of this film which shows us how it is important to be true to yourself and as you said “do the things that make you happy” because you are the most important person in your life. It is so terrible when you feel this underestimation on the part of your family and when a huge amount of responsibility is imposed on you in your childhood. It is so sad that such a pressure was placed on Jenny from an early age and that she didn’t have a real childhood. Unfortunately, a lot of people will be able to find themselves in this story.

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