The Time Travelers (1964)

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The Time Travelers (1964) Poster

In 1964, a group of scientists create a portal that takes them to a barren, mutant inhabited, Earth in the year 2071.


5.1/10
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  • John Hoyt in The Time Travelers (1964)
  • The Time Travelers (1964)
  • Gloria Leslie in The Time Travelers (1964)
  • Merry Anders in The Time Travelers (1964)
  • Preston Foster and John Hoyt in The Time Travelers (1964)

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18 October 2010 | henri sauvage
7
| Highly imaginative time travel saga from the Sixties
Three scientists and the inevitable everyday Joe are catapulted over a hundred years into the future by a lab accident, into a post-apocalyptic nightmare in which atomic war has devastated the planet. Pursued by a band of savage mutants, they're rescued by the last few humans, a small group of scientists and technicians engaged in a race against time to construct a starship and get away before the more numerous mutants can break through their defenses.

None of these elements is particularly new to the genre, but writer/director Ib Melchior manages to combine them into a fairly entertaining and occasionally original piece of "upper low-budget" sf cinema. This isn't to say that the pace doesn't occasionally lag a bit toward the middle, with some sequences feeling like they were inserted just to pad out the running time. (Like a totally unnecessary scene devoted to what's supposed to be a demonstration of their futuristic "matter transmitter", which is clearly just a stage magician's prop.)

Mostly, though, there's scarcely a moment wasted in exposition or character development, as the story barrels along to its truly unique conclusion.

Set design, miniatures, costuming and makeup -- particularly the androids -- are surprisingly good, for its budget. The optical effects are sparse but imaginative. Though it's early in his distinguished career, having Vilmos Zsigmond behind the camera also contributes considerably to making this a much more polished and expensive-looking production than you'd normally expect to see from American International.

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