You won’t know what’s going on, nor will you care

It is difficult to find anyone who has read David Mitchell’s novel and does not talk in language that falls off the edge of admiration into a whirlpool of superlatives.

It may be harder to find someone who sat through almost three hours of its cinematic adaptation who understood a thing, or cared less.

At a pinch it is possible to admire the film’s audacity – three directors , multiple roles for supporting actors, a time shift from pre-history to post-history, a disregard of logic in favour of anarchic storytelling – and yet beg for mercy in the face of what appears to be six separate, disconnected scenarios masquerading as one.

It takes a while to recognise Forrest Gump, speaking faux cave and dressed like Ben Gunn.

It is easier to appreciate Storm in futuristic sci-fi fashion, or Jim Broadbent in an old people’s home that resembles a POW camp.

How these people coexist is a mystery not worth solving.

At a time when money is tight and Hollywood appears to concentrate solely on sequels, franchises, CGI extravaganzas and embarrassing sex comedies, who on earth put up the cash to finance such a pile of pretentious twaddle?