All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1167. An easy way of seeing how…
Things to Come
The future is here!
Late 1960 and the world consists of feudal cities after decades of a global war and plague. 2035 and the world has been rebuilt with fantastic technology, but has progress gone too far and has man learned anything.
My immediate reaction to Things to Come is essentially the same as it was to Avatar - a big budget spectacle with a too-preachy message and a fairly dull story. While I did appreciate the anthological structure to Things to Come, the stories of each of the time periods (present-day war, dystopian fiefdom, and futuristic utopia) were littered with overly dramatic, overly talkie, and overly dry characters that I really couldn't care less about, let alone the sheer horror I felt imagining having these types of people running society. Without a lick of intentional humor and a surprising lack of overt optimism until the end of the last act, the film beats the horrors of war over your head while…
Epic in scope and impressive in design, but severely lacking in engaging characters. The structure is such that you never really get a chance to care about anything that is happening. You begin with a pastoral Christmas setting in "Everytown" with the rumblings of an impending war permeating the news and conversation. We spend a few minutes with some friends and family celebrating, but it is very brief and we are quickly thrust into quite an epic and visually amazing war.
From there we see a plague, then a resulting regrouping of Everytown under a half-wit oligarch, then his downfall, then we get Utopia. This all occurs by flashing forward chunks at a time and we only get a relatively…
It's fun to look back at the future.
Made in 1936, this movie spans a centuries time period. Starting at the cusp of another world war, the story advances a decade showing the devastation that the war has caused. Society is in ruins. Only small villages are left. Technology is stone aged at best. Then a wave of technical progress and evolution takes holds. 80 years later, the threat is that now progress with smother out what it means to be human.
The immediate visual reference for this film is Fritz Lange's METROPOLIS. But unlike that movie, this film lacks any real sense of humanity or the struggles of man.
The acting in this film is so stilted and Shakespearean…
In some respects, this is an Interesting foray into the barbed narcissism of mankind's megalomania. In others it's an exercise in production design.
The dialogue is an afterthought, and the acting is victimized by its own inability to elevate itself out of what seems like a community sponsored stage play where everyone is desperately trying to show their chops ("I AM SHOUTING!" "I AM FURTIVELY LISTENING" "I AM WEARING A CLOAK").
From an academia standpoint it's interesting, but it's also indulgent and boring as hell.
Sometimes, when I watch an old film like Things To Come, I wonder if I'm being really patronising with my thoughts towards some aspects of it. I even felt patronising calling it an "old film" just then.
By this I mean that I looked at so many things in Things To Come with such utter amazement, always partnering this amazement with thoughts like, "Cor, how could they do that back then? Surely that was impossible! They didn't even have computers back then!" I can't help it. Maybe the makers could have regarded this as a complement to their ingenuity, though, I don't know.
Of course, they got by, on this occasion, on using what they had available and astonishing levels…
Quaint vision of the future with some hammy acting, but powerful visuals. The movie is strongest in the beginning. Predating WWII by only a few years, the movie makes some startling predictions that came to pass. But as the movie reaches further into the future, it becomes increasingly silly. I mean from the vantage point of 2013, it's funny to see that the filmmakers imagined 2036 as an underground world full of futuristic sets and man skirts. A world where we haven't even been to space yet. A world where men rail against the evils of "progress" itself. The movie deals in vast, broad strokes where characters speak only in terms of lofty subjects: peace, progress, death. Little is personal in this movie, but how can it be when it bounces from generation to generation so fast? It's a fascinating movie, but not a very affecting one.
The human drama behind a seventy-year trek through global war and rebuilding. This film is undeniably cool. The sets are grander and more spectacular than the ones in "Metropolis." It's not better than the Lang film (the acting would need to be much better), but it certainly deserves to be mentioned alongside it. The visuals are stunning and the score is especially noteworthy. The film gets a little messy in the second act but picks itself up and dusts itself off in the third to really tie it all together nicely. A great cautionary tale appropriately released in the Cold War era.
A fantasy movie accounting things happening in sequence even through to the future where it foretells the advancement of technology, people, and the world; however, the inevitability of conflicts between man and man, , man and ideas, and man and the world. Not only is it a good story but it uses different editing techniques that show knowledge of such styles in the earlier days. One example of an editing technique used is montage. Used when the movie is fast forwarded to the future.
Big. Damn. Movie.
It's not the complex, socialist, expressionist wonder that is "Metropolis", but this Korda production is fucking huge and bold and it works very well on that level alone. Much like Wells' novel, The Shape of Things to Come, this film is not so much about its story of its characters as it is about stimulating ideas for human aspiration. Propaganda of a kind. Namely, it imagines a technocracy supplanting decades of war. Scientists and engineers and the like raise humanity out of a dark age and into a unified force for progress. Progress is everything. It is the thing which will provide meaning for mankind. This movie attempts to show that, and with its bombast, its incredible design work, and its terrifyingly accurate imagining of a second World War, the point is made. A unique film to behold.
It is easy to initially write this off as a slow moving sci-fi drama from England, however, when it synthesizes to the final, grand, upward-looking narrative, the visionary work is hard to dismiss. This has all the wonder of a genuine encounter with a fictive world made real.
Fascinating film. Plays today as an alternate history rather than the piece of "prophetic" futurism that H.G. Wells intended it as. Unquestionably one of the most influential pieces of early SF filmmaking.
Interesting little thing which chronicles the following 100 years after 1936 after WWII which people saw coming - Unusual storytelling with a lot of unexpected pre-occurrences of George A. Romero's zombie apocalypse - Amazing sequences of harsh as hell demolition of cities in the beginning and as it goes on it's exceedingly clear that THINGS TO COME certainly predates FORBIDDEN PLANET as the first "serious" sci-fi film. I guess it's only spoiled by a thin outline (100 years in 90 some minutes!) and stale, melodramatic acting - this could have been a GREAT silent film.
Love the hammy acting, the futurism, the miniatures, the matte work, Muir Matheson's fulsome score.
Things to come is a movie that tells the evolution of things when a war comes and becomes the main trade of all things between people. But, there's hope in science and peace, there's an answer that is different from the common sense and the old ways things are being done.
That seems to me that the Foundation series is somewhat based upon the H. G. Wells novel.
The early part of the movie is weirdly prophetic about war breaking out in 1940 with London being bombed, considering this came out in 1936. The rest...well...not so much but that kind of goes without saying.
What I personally find interesting about sci-fi movies, especially older ones, is what informs their vision of the future based on when that movie was made. Because this movie came out in the late thirties, the vision of the future (2036) is art Deco with everybody dressed like space-age Roman citizens. It reminded me a lot of "Metropolis".
- A Trip to the Moon
- The Great Train Robbery
- The Birth of a Nation
- Les Vampires
- Grand Illusion
- Seven Samurai
- The Lady Vanishes
- The 400 Blows
The entire Criterion collection organized by spine number.
I don't know why I did this.
Number I've Seen: 168/753
- Grand Illusion
- Seven Samurai
- The Lady Vanishes
- Crook's Tour
UPDATED: December 10, 2014
The Criterion Collection is a video distribution company that sells "important classic and contemporary films" in…