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Time Travel Films To Get You In The Mood
If you can't wait for the time-travelling mind-bender The Death and Life of Otto Bloom screening as the MIFF 2016 Opening Night Gala, then now is the perfect time to re-visit classic time travel titles to get you in the mood. Filmmakers have been obsessed with time travel since light started being pointed through a lens and we have a cracking list to get you primed.
Posted by Alexandra Lagerwey, MIFF Membership Coordinator.
Destiny (1921, Fritz Lang)
Lesser known that Lang's Metropolis, Destiny has been an influence on many directors including, Alfred Hitchcock and Luis Buñeuel. In ture Fritz Lang style, three human lives are represented by a candle with Death showing up to grant a woman three chances to save her lover. Classic Death! This is one that will have you scratching your head and enjoying the amazing early visual effects.
The Time Machine (1960, George Pal)
If you want to be in a time travel film, you need to master a good "What the hell is going on?" face. Rod Taylor in George Pal's 1960 version of The Time Machine manages this while remaining dashing in a smoking jacket. Spoiler alert: The machine works!
Ivan Vasilievich: Back to the Future (1973, Leonid Gayday)
No, not that Back to the Future! If you've never heard of this 70s Soviet comic science fiction, you're missing out, as this was the number one film of 1973 in Russia, with more than 60 million tickets sold! In a classic time-switch situation, modern day Aleksandr swaps places with Ivan the terrible and high jinks ensue!
Time After Time (1979, Nicholas Meyer)
Malcolm McDowell + HG Wells + Jack the Ripper = Genius!
(Can the television remake due out this year even compare?)
Time Bandits (1981 Terry Gilliam)
Starring Sean Connery, John Cleese and Shelley Duvall, Time Bandits is the first in Gilliam's "Trilogy of Imagination" series – followed by Brazil (1985) and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1988). And what an imagination! Dwarves, the Napoleonic War, Robin Hood, King Agamemnon, the Titanic and a frightening floating head called the Supreme Being.
Peggy Sue Got Married (1985, Frances Ford Coppola)
Haven't we all wanted to travel back in time to our high-school glory years and hang out with Nicolas Cage and Kathleen Turner?
Army of Darkness (1992, Sam Raimi)
The third film in the wonderfully bonkers Evil Dead trilogy (and 2015 TV continuation, Ash vs the Evil Dead), Army of Darkness sees Ash travelling back to the Middle Ages equipped with his trusty chainsaw hand and boomstick to battle the undead and get that pesky Necronomicon. All in a day's work for our hero.
Groundhog Day (1993, Harold Ramis)
All-round bad bloke Phil Connors is trapped in a time loop and we're all invited! The magic of Harold Ramis and Bill Murray is on full display in Groundhog Day as weatherman Phil slowly turns from self-absorbed sleaze ball to bloody legend. How long was Phil trapped in the loop? Some say 10 years, Ramis says 30 to 40, actor Stephen Tobolowsky says 10,000. That's a lotta groundhogs.
Midnight in Paris (2011, Woody Allen)
All your favourites are here with Ernest Hemmingway, The Fitzgeralds, Gertrude Stein and Salvador Dali giving advice to our bumbling hero Gil, who happens upon a way back into 1920s Paris. It's a whole 'you need to look back before you can move forward' kind of deal. Way, way back.
Predestination (2014, The Spierig Brothers)
The MIFF 2014 Opening Night film, Predestination is a time travelling mystery where we try to figure out the identity of the "Fizzle Bomber" using time travel as our greatest detective weapon! Is there anything time travel can't solve?