PLOT SUMMARY: Guy invents time machine, goes to future, tries to save mankind.
UNCOMFORTABLE PLOT SUMMARY (inspired by this): [highlight for spoilers]→ Mankind fails to accomplish anything in a million years, and in fact goes backward.
PEOPLE: Starring Rod Taylor (Winston Churchill in Inglorious Basterds, Falcon Crest). Alan Young (Filby, his Irish friend) later went on to be the voice of Scrooge McDuck, as well as starring in the 2002 remake of The Time Machine (bit part as a flower store worker). He was also Wilbur from Mr. Ed — someone mistook J.R. “Bob” Dobbs on a shirt of mine as Wilbur from Mr. Ed. He was also in Beverly Hills Cop 3. Yvette Mimieux … She’s hot. 1960s hot. I’ll leave it at that. She was also in The Black Hole (1979). Paul Frees, the unfortunately uncredited voice of the rings, later went on to be a voice in The Last Unicorn movie. He was also the “evil car” K.A.R.R. in the one episode of Knight Rider that had a 2nd talking car. Hah!
QUIRKS: Science fiction based on H.G. Wells’s book. Time travel. 1900. A non-futuristic future. Humanity’s rebirth.
VISUALS: Be prepared to laugh at the quaint special effects. They’re not even as good as original Star Trek. The lava was actually oatmeal. In high definition, you can clearly see how certain scenes are 2 separate pieces of film “taped” together. (I don’t know what special effects technology they actually used, but the black border between various parts of the same scene was a good 0.5-1 inches on my 52-inch screen.) They still add to the film, but it is definitely in a corny, dated way. They still had a quaint kind of splendor to them, like original Star Trek.
The “rings” scene is one of the best!!!!!
SOUNDTRACK: I missed the Woody Woodpecker laughs that were put in the background during “Eloi conversation” scenes, as a tribute to the cartoon :/ As well as the little girl picking up a Woody Woodpecker figurine.
MORALS: You gotta fight! For your right! … To not be [highlight for spoilers]→ consumed by sentient predators. Really though — when the first Eloi finally manages to make a fist and use it: It is the rebirth of humanity.
It is one of the simplest moments in all of cinema history to ever represent such a tangible amount of hope.
POLITICS: Mankind often wastes its own achievements – via war. This movie makes that pretty clear.
BAD STUFF: There are lots of mistakes and flaws. I mean, watching a whole [highlight for spoilers]→ city get nuked and being the sole survivor with no radiation damage and being able to walk back to your unharmed time machine? Total bullshit. It’s also funny how easy it is to get laid in this movie. I guess that’s more of a good thing, actually.
CONCLUSION: I watched this as a child many MANY times on a small (13-inch) screen. I never noticed the storytelling / moviemaking / plot / special effects flaws until I watched it as an adult in a 52-inch TV in HD. However, it is a classic story, is quite well done, and succeeds as an AWESOME sci-fi movie despite it’s campy flaws. This is probably the only movie out of the entire 1960s that I can remember greatly enjoying, and I’m glad I watched it again, because Carolyn had never seen it! Even old-movie-haters should watch this one.
RECOMMENDATION: Even if you dislike pre-1980 movies like I do, this is a classic greatly worth checking out.
SIMILAR MOVIES: (Insert any time travel movie here.)
MOVIE QUOTE: Filby: He’s got all the time in the world.
Mood: reading dental work
Music: Megadeth – Five Magics