YOU WILL ORBIT INTO THE FANTASTIC FUTURE!
On New Year’s Eve, 1899, scientist H. George Wells (Rod Taylor) makes his first journey into the future in a time machine that he has built; after jumping just a few decades forward, he takes a bolder step… This adaptation of the H.G. Wells classic may be more true to the sci-fi extravaganzas of the 1950s than the original, but is undeniably entertaining stuff, especially for matinee audiences. The visual effects that show rapid time progression during the journeys were inventive enough to win an Oscar and the story has many exciting, campy and even thought-provoking moments. Taylor is engaging as the dashing traveler.
1960-U.S. 103 min. Color. Produced and directed by George Pal. Novel: H.G. Wells. Cast: Rod Taylor (H. George Wells), Alan Young (David Filby/James Filby), Yvette Mimieux (Weena), Sebastian Cabot, Tom Helmore, Whit Bissell.
Trivia: Paul Scofield was allegedly considered for the part of the time traveler. Remade for TV in 1978 and as The Time Machine in 2002.
Oscar: Best Special Effects.
Last word: “We modernized ‘War of the Worlds’ [which Pal produced] because flying saucers were so topical at that time. In ‘The Time Machine’ we didn’t because we had a different problem. Here the problem was to convince the audience that the time machine was real. So we put it in the past at the turn of the century, and we showed incidents the audience knows did happen, such as the changing of women’s fashions, the First World War, the Second World War, etcetera. By that time the people believed it, so went along and believed there was such a thing in the future as little blond people on the surface and albino monsters down below.” (Pal, ColemanZone.com)