REVIEW: ‘The Time It Takes’ – A Treatise on Healing

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The Time It Takes - But Why Tho

The Time It Takes (El Tiempo Que Te Doy) is a Spanish Netflix Original created by , , and produced in an utterly creative 11-minute, 10 episode format where each progressive episode displays one less minute in the past and one more minute in the present. Lina (de Santiago) and Nico (Álvaro Cervantes) had a storybook relationship, until they didn’t. In the present, they break up and Lina is learning to move on, while in the past, we watch their relationship from its beginning to its middle and through its end.

Of all the things I enjoy about The Time It Takes, the format is easily what I enjoy the most. The short episodes themselves make this series short and sweet; I’m not sure if it would have landed as strongly had it entailed longer episodes. But the decreasing time spent in the past and increasing time in the present each episode is a perfect way to demonstrate exactly what the series is about: moving on.

Ending a relationship, especially one that you were deeply committed to and in love during is devastating. But time has the potential to heal all, and as time goes on, less and less time is spent fixating on what was, and more time is left for what is and can be. This format is perfectly demonstrative of that as Nico becomes less and less a centerpiece in the show through each episode.

The Time It Takes is multifaceted in its morals. It’s about the warning signs of an unhealthy relationship, just as much as it’s about the healing process after a traumatic breakup, just as much as it’s about the ways those around us demonstrate their romantic love influences our ideals. As the details of both Lina and Nico’s relationship and of Lina’s past and present unfurl, you generate a clear sense of what went wrong, where she should have bailed over the years, and what factors in her other relationships may have kept her from realizing she was stuck in a relationship that was never going to give her the kind of happiness she thought she had obtained. These messages are all delivered with strong performances by both actors and are most often offered with subtlety rather than grand exposition.

I think it may be easy to find the ending of the series frustrating. Without offering spoilers, it’s not the ending you expect after a whole series of episodes about moving forward and healing. It’s not cut and dry what actually transpires, and perhaps you can impose your own ending onto the uncertainty, but I actually think the ending is just right in its open endedness. It offers the viewer the opportunity to place themselves into Lina’s shoes and ask themselves once and for all, what would they do in this situation. Whether you’ve been through a serious breakup, are stuck in a rut of a relationship, or just enjoy the drama of The Time It Takes, leaving the ending up to the viewer to decide is the perfect way to take every lesson its been teaching you all along and test you on whether you really took them to heart or not. Your natural inclination and hope for its conclusion after viewing the final scene may say something about how you view love, relationships, and the process of moving on.

The Time It Takes is an excellent series, with indearing acting and a perfect format for delivering its story and its message.

The Time It Takes is streaming now on Netflix


The Time It Takes
  • 8.5/10
    Rating - 8.5/10
8.5/10

TL;DR

The Time It Takes is an excellent series, with indearing acting and a perfect format for delivering its story and its message.