HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
mother!
God's Own Country
Unseen, The
Tonight She Comes
Chasing the Dragon
Into the Forest
Limehouse Golem, The
Frankenstein '80
Good Time
Bucket of Blood, A
Detroit
Hide and Seek
What Happened to Monday
River Wild, The
Veteran
Slumber Party '57
Juliette, or Key of Dreams
Summertime Killer
Sweet Virginia
Ben & Arthur
Your Name
Red Hot Shot, The
New World
Trick Baby
Weapons of Death
Second Best Secret Agent in the Whole Wide World, The
Kills on Wheels
Strait-Jacket
This Man is Dangerous
Burning Paradise
   
 
Newest Articles
Apocalypse 80s UK: Threads and When the Wind Blows
Movie Flop to Triumphant TV Revival: Twin Peaks and The League of Gentlemen
Driving Force: The Golden Age of American Car Chases
Madness in his Method: Jim Carrey and Andy Kaufman
Music, Love and Flowers: Monterey Pop on Blu-ray
The Melville Mood: His Final Two Films on The Melville Collection Blu-ray
Always Agn├Ęs: 3 from The Varda Collection Blu-ray
Re: Possession of Vehicles - Killer Cars, Trucks and a Vampire Motorcycle
The Whicker Kicker: Whicker's World Vols 5&6 on DVD
The Empress, the Mermaid and the Princess Bride: Three 80s Fantasy Movies
   
 
  Time Travelers, The In The LoopBuy this film here.
Year: 1964
Director: Ib Melchior
Stars: Preston Foster, Philip Carey, Merry Anders, John Hoyt, Dennis Patrick, Joan Woodbury, Delores Wells, Steve Franken, Berry Kroeger, Gloria Leslie, Mollie Glessing, Peter Strudwick, J. Edward McKinley, Margaret Seldeen, Forrest J. Ackerman
Genre: Science Fiction
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: A group of scientists at this Californian university campus are pioneering a device which allows them to see backwards and forwards in time. This portal is being tested today, and they are getting criticism for using so much power and draining the resources of the establishment; technician Danny McKee (Steve Franken) has been sent to tell them to ease off. However they are too far into their work as the portal they use first shows the campus from two days ago, then the picture breaks up and they see a barren wasteland appear. According to their instruments, this is the Earth in one hundred and seven years time....

Ib Melchior toiled away at the coalface of science fiction for a number of years, and while you could argue he never came up with an all-time classic, he did manage to conjure up a few memorable images and concepts, with The Time Travelers often referred to as his crowning achievement, mainly because of its mindbending ending which has been seared into the memories of thousands of kids watching old sci-fi movies on television, who are now grown up. Obviously indebted to H.G. Wells, Melchior's film essentially embraces the whole idea of science fiction and spends just under ninety minutes doing the most he can with it on limited means.

In spite of the low budget, this still looks pretty good thanks to intelligent use of the resources available. The portal the scientists create, as Danny discovers, is more than a mere window on the coming years, because they can actually walk through it and pass through the decades to exist in the future. This they do, one following the other to persuade them to go back before the portal breaks down, yet by the stage that it does they are all four of them wandering the wasteland and being chased by some pesky mutants. They seek refuge in a cave, see the mutants unable to follow, and are greeted by some androids and a woman who explains all: Earth has been devastated by atomic war, but there's still hope.

Inside this cave network, there is a futuristic world endeavouring to build a spaceship that will take the advanced and non-mutated survivors there to the stars, where they have pinpointed an Earth-like world somewhere in Alpha Centauri. At first the four from the past want to get back to warn the world and stop the war, as being a science fiction tale from this era the worries of the bomb were still very much in everyone's mind, but the first hints that this may not be the optimistic view of things to come that you might have hoped is when one of the officials informs them that if they had gone back to prevent the war, then it would have already happened. So they haven't.

There may be a deep pessimism about The Time Travelers, but Melchior is clearly in love with the ideas of the genre, so there are androids who in magic tricks are separated from their body parts (and reattached in the case of one robot's head - all in one shot), an electronic musical intrument that provides its own psychedelic lightshow, and oranges which grow under lab conditions to supply vitamin C for the journey. In fact, the film tends to be distracted by the wonders it presents, so by the time the mutants are attacking you've been lulled into a false sense of security. As an example of the movies tackling "hard" sci-fi, it's still a little goofy, and has a cameo from superfan Forrest J. Ackerman to boot, but it does work itself up into a truly bleak finale that sends its characters into an inescapable fate, not something you've been led to expect from what had gone before. Music by Richard LaSalle.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3177 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Ib Melchior  (1917 - 2015)

Danish writer and director, with a background in stage and television. He teamed with producer Sidney Pink for three films: The Angry Red Planet, Reptilicus and Journey to the Seventh Planet. He also wrote and directed The Time Travelers, and scripted Robinson Crusoe on Mars; Death Race 2000 was based on his story.

 
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
Who's the best?
Robin Askwith
Mark Wahlberg
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
  Andrew Irvine
Ian Phillips
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Paul Shrimpton
Lee Lopez
Jennifer Thomas
Enoch Sneed
   

 

Last Updated: