HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
American Assassin
Die, Mommie, Die!
All the Money in the World
Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds, The
Black Panther
Children's Hour, The
Mayhem
Sphere
Guyver, The
Night School
Loveless
Ragtime
Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters
Murders in the Rue Morgue
Wound, The
Scalawag
Let's Get Harry
Girl with Green Eyes
Sunchaser, The
Tom Jones
Downsizing
Defiant Ones, The
Centerfold Girls, The
Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner, The
120 BPM (Beats Per Minute)
Police Academy 3: Back in Training
Safe Place, A
Saturday Night and Sunday Morning
Cargo
Entertainer, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Bad Taste from Outer Space: Galaxy of Terror and Xtro
A Yen for the 1990s: Iron Monkey and Satan Returns
Hey, Punk: Jubilee and Rock 'n' Roll High School
Help! with The Knack: Richard Lester in 1965
Roll Up, Get Yer Free Cinema: The Shorts on the BFI Woodfall Blu-rays
Time for Heroes: The Dam Busters and How I Won the War
Hell is a City: Midnight Cowboy and Taxi Driver
Boris Goes Bonkers, Bela Goes Bats: The Old Dark House and Mark of the Vampire
Charles Bronson's Mid-70s: Breakheart Pass and Others
Kids in America: The Breakfast Club vs Metropolitan
80s Dance-Off: Staying Alive vs Murder-Rock vs Breakin'
The Cinematic Darkside of Donald Crowhurst
Dutch Courage: The Flodder Series
Coming of Age: Boys on Film 18 - Heroes on DVD
Country and Irish - The secret history of Irish pop culture
   
 
  Time Bandits Hello, Cruel WorldBuy this film here.
Year: 1981
Director: Terry Gilliam
Stars: Craig Warnock, David Rappaport, Sean Connery, David Warner, Ralph Richardson, John Cleese, Ian Holm, Michael Palin, Shelley Duvall, Peter Vaughan, Katherine Helmond, Jim Broadbent, Derek Deadman
Genre: Comedy, Fantasy, Adventure
Rating:  8 (from 4 votes)
Review: A young boy, Kevin (Craig Warnock), is alarmed one bedtime when a knight on horseback bursts into his bedroom, then disappears. The next evening, he is ready for its return, but a bunch of little men arrive instead to take him on a journey across time...

Monty Python team members Michael Palin and Terry Gilliam wrote this unsentimental comedy fantasy. Time Bandits fairly heaves with ideas, and refuses to stay in the one place for very long. It's this quality that sums up its appeal and its problem. But it's not a big problem.

As with the Python material, Time Bandits takes a sardonic view of people. Most of the characters (other than the innocent Kevin) are self-serving, deluded or ridiculous. Napoleon (Ian Holm) is obsessed with his stature, overcompensating by conquering nations (and reciting the heights of famous figures in history). Robin Hood (John Cleese) is urbanely clueless, heading a band of thugs who assist him in his charitable cause. Only King Agamemnon (Sean Connery) is noble and heroic, but even he has the wool pulled over his eyes by the little men.

In spite of this wry approach, with an ironic, almost callous, worldview in the manner of an old-style fairy tale, it never stoops to sneering. This makes the characters seem more human, and there's something affectionate about the treatment of them here. Evil (David Warner) is obsessed with computers and the Supreme Being (Ralph Richardson) turns out to be a rather vague old gent somewhat lacking in boundless love for his creation - it's just a job to him. Even the unhappy ending raises a smile.

The only flaw is the film's episodic nature - it never settles down. The main plotline about Evil trying to steal the map of time never really gets going until the last hour. Still, the imagination on show compensates - just watch for the ship that turns out to be a giant's hat, or the final battle between Evil and the Bandits.

The actors are consistently perfect, there are loads of good laughs and plenty of top quality lines like "I was enjoying that!" and "Nipples for men!" to remember. The Bandits, led by David Rappaport, are Kenny Baker, Jack Purvis, Malcolm Dixon, Mike Edmonds and Tiny Ross. Also with: Sheila Fearn, David Daker and Neil McCarthy (as Marian, apparently). Plus: a cheeky monkey. Music by Mike Moran.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 9441 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Terry Gilliam  (1940 - )

Endlessly imaginative American director and animator who gained fame as one of the Monty Python team. He co-directed the Pythons' films Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Monty Python's Life of Brian and Monty Python's Meaning of Life, but also helmed his own projects, starting with Jabberwocky and Time Bandits.

The brilliant Brazil was beset with production problems, and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen was nearly a complete disaster. After that, Gilliam directed other people's stories: The Fisher King, Twelve Monkeys, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, The Brothers Grimm. 2006's controversial Tideland returned Gilliam to independent filmmaking, while his failed attempt to bring Don Quixote to the screen was documented in the painful Lost in La Mancha. His next, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, survived the death of its lead actor, and The Zero Theorem was a melancholy sci-fi which proved he could work quickly and efficiently after all.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which film has the best theme song?
Spectre
The Ups and Downs of a Handyman
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Paul Smith
  Jamie Nichols
Andrew Pragasam
George White
Darren Jones
  Butch Elliot
   

 

Last Updated: