HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Deeper You Dig, The
Trouble Brewing
Song Without a Name
Incident in a Ghostland
Relic
Nobody
Now, At Last!
Tales from the Hood
Radio Parade of 1935
Dead
Death at Broadcasting House
Huracan
Ghost Strata
Call to Spy, A
Tailgate
Other Lamb, The
Every Time I Die
Lynn + Lucy
Topsy-Turvy
Honest Thief
Blood and Money
Rose: A Love Story
Antrum: The Deadliest Film Ever Made
Om Dar-B-Dar
Silencing, The
J.R. 'Bob' Dobbs and the Church of SubGenius
Dick Johnson is Dead
Two/One
Cognition
Legacy of Lies
I Am Woman
Alien Addiction
Dare, The
South Terminal
Little Monsters
Yield to the Night
My Zoe
Young Playthings
End of Summer
Times of Harvey Milk, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Down to the Welles: Orson Welles Great Mysteries Volume 2 on DVD
Herding Cats: Sleepwalkers on Blu-ray
Confessions of a Porn Star: Adult Material on DVD
They're Still Not Sure It is a Baby: Eraserhead on Blu-ray
Werewolves are Real: Dog Soldiers on Digital
Rose: A Love Story - Producers April Kelley and Sara Huxley Interview
Phone Phreak: 976-EVIL on Blu-ray
Living the Nightmare: Dementia on Blu-ray
Becky and The Devil to Pay: Ruckus and Lane Skye Interview
Big Top Bloodbath: Circus of Horrors on Blu-ray
A Knock on the Door at 4 O'clock in the Morning: The Strangers on Blu-ray
Wives of the Skies: Honey Lauren Interview
To Catch a Thief: After the Fox on Blu-ray
Tackling the Football Film: The Arsenal Stadium Mystery on Blu-ray
Film Noir's Golden Couple: This Gun for Hire on Blu-ray
The Doctor Who Connection: Invasion on Blu-ray
Hill's Angles: Benny Hill and Who Done It? on Blu-ray
Big Willie Style: Keep It Up Downstairs on Blu-ray
Walt's Vault: 5 Cult Movies on Disney+
Paradise Lost: Walkabout on Blu-ray
Buster Makes Us Feel Good: Buster Keaton - 3 Films (Volume 3) on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 3 - Don't Go Away - I Could Do with a Bit of Cheer Now!
What Use is Grief to a Horse? Equus on Blu-ray
For God's Sake Strap Yourselves Down: Flash Gordon on 4K UHD Collector's Edition
Party Hard: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure on Blu-ray
   
 
  Terminal Man, The The Technological Rage
Year: 1974
Director: Mike Hodges
Stars: George Segal, Joan Hackett, Richard Dysart, Donald Moffat, Michael C. Gwynne, William Hansen, Jill Clayburgh, Norman Burton, James Sikking, Matt Clark, Jim Antonio, Gene Borkan, Burke Byrnes, Jordan Rhodes, Dee Carroll, Steve Kanaly, Victor Argo
Genre: Science FictionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 2 votes)
Review: Harry Benson (George Segal) is a computer programmer whose work in the field has been pioneering to say the least yet since an accident left him with brain damage he has become a social pariah thanks to his injury leaving him suffering violent episodes every few days. This has cost him his family, his job and his freedom, because his moods are so unpredictable, though there is a solution which science has brought to him: a tiny computer placed in his brain which will modulate his mind and prevent him from attacking anyone else. The boffins behind this hope to bring it to the two million or so people who cannot control their impulses either.

Though naturally they have to see if it works on Harry first, and with a title like The Terminal Man you can imagine how well that goes. Of course, it could refer to the main character becoming like a computer terminal, a pun of sorts, but this was nineteen-seventies science fiction, and more often than not it was setting the stage for the future to go horribly wrong. The years in the genre between 2001: A Space Odyssey and Star Wars were very interesting in its development on screen, as before George Lucas happened along in 1977 the order of the day was bleak foretelling of how the advances in the decade would simply result in hastening the decay of society.

Dystopian science fiction they called it and if it took its cue from the written fiction which shared the same concerns, there was little here which when supposed to be taken seriously, rather than as an adventure, that told you the approaching decades were going to be a brave new world of sunny opportunity. The Terminal Man took that to a more personal scale, where one man's mind was the landscape where the battle for the future was being fought: we hear (though don't see) there have been riots across the nation, and it is planned to put a computer in each one of the insurgents to stop them breaking the law. Oddly, for a story where violence and its worries were the main contention, this was a particularly low key movie.

You cannot imagine a sci-fi effort which updated the Frankenstein story made in the twenty-first century looking anything like this unless it was some kind of art film, which was what this resembled for long stretches, as if encouraging the audience to contemplate deeply of the implications of controlling the impulses which in some views could be natural. Yet even then, it has been established Benson is enduring an abnormal influence in his psychology, so really did need a cure: if he had been one of the insurgents who was being operated on to stop him rising up against a totalitarian government then the point would have struck home with rather more force. As it is, here we have a tragedy in high tech garb.

Director Mike Hodges never had the most predictable career with regards to the subject matter he took on, ranging across a wide variety of styles, and The Terminal Man does not look like the work of the man who in 1974 had recently given us his classic thriller Get Carter. In fact, he had taken over the project from the man who penned the original novel, Michael Crichton who somewhat ingominiously had been fired from his own material, but visually Hodges brought a very sterile, antiseptic look to his drama which would probably have looked more original if Lucas had not got in there first with his own sci-fi dystopia THX 1138 shortly before this came out. Certainly The Terminal Man looks its age now, as you cannot envisage anything today spending a good twenty minutes on the operation sequence, depicted with meticulous attention to detail which many will find boring. Yet adjust to that icy pace and tone, and you would see an excellent, humane Segal performance and find plenty of room to ruminate dourly.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1687 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Mike Hodges  (1932 - )

British director, from television, with an interesting take on crime movies. His first film was the gritty, gangster cult Get Carter, but the offbeat follow-up Pulp was not as successful. The Terminal Man was a Hollywood science fiction thriller, and Flash Gordon a gloriously over-the-top comic book epic which showed Hodges' good humour to its best effect.

However, the straight comedy Morons from Outer Space was a flop, though it found a few fans, and while IRA drama Prayer for the Dying and the supernatural Black Rainbow weren't successful either, gambling thriller Croupier was an unexpected sleeper hit in America. Tough gangster movie I'll Sleep When I'm Dead followed.

 
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 star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Paul Smith
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: