All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1187. 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…
Difficult to rate this guy, as the visual effects in this are extraordinary, regardless of the time it was made. It continued to impress me till the end, and the look and feel were very original.
But good grief the script is terrible. Everything is so preachy and hammy, I was so bored with what they were saying and just waiting on the next effects sequence, that I'm still unclear on the film's message.
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.
Indeed. What it actually predicts is the modern blockbuster, in which everything is subordinate to production design and special effects—magnificent structures populated by declamatory drones. And it's cowardly, too, envisioning a century-long battle between scientific, humanistic progress and various dictators and Luddites without ever even one single time alluding to religion in any way (unless you count the fact that the opening takes place on Christmas). If there's one thing that's not gonna change for centuries, it's people pointing to some imaginary dude in the sky to justify their fear and ignorance. < /soapbox> Anyway, Menzies does what he does best, which is spectacle, but giving guys like Massey and Richardson free rein with dialogue this stilted is a recipe for md'agony.
The most elaborate science-fiction movie ever made in England until 2001. H.G. Wells wrote the tendentious screenplay (based on his book The Shape of Things to Come); the celebrated designer William Cameron Menzies directed, Vincent Korda (with László Moholy-Nagy) worked on the sets, Georges Périnal was the cinematographer, and Arthur Bliss wrote the score. Wells peers ahead through a century of devastation to the cold, abstract architecture of 2055. The whole "scientific" phantasmagoria is posh and modernistic--an amusingly dated view of the future. (It suggests the 20s.) The movie is more handsome than dramatic, with spacious sets and great costumes (they're like what actors in Greek tragedies wore in avant-garde productions of the 20s), and some wonderful howlers in Raymond Massey's and Ralph Richardson's dialogue and acting. With Cedric Hardwicke, John Clements, Ann Todd, Margaretta Scott, and Derrick de Marney. Produced by Alexander Korda.
This movie remains upsettingly pertinent. A view of the horrors inflicted on a humanity, by humanity when rationality and sanity are thrown out, in favor of hatred, nationalism, and fear. First, there is generations-long war, then plague and rule by despots, then the struggle back to our place in the son. But always, there are the fearful, the hateful, and the ignorant, trying hard to pull everyone down into the muck. I hate how every time I watch this film, it feels fresh and true. Looking around me today, I see all the same factors at work. Little, petty people unwilling to stand up, and fighting tooth and nail to keep anyone else from standing up. There are some technical…
On a visual level, most of this is unassailable, and deserving of its reputation. But boy is it a crypto-fascist chore to watch.
How are you not pumped about this? The moon! Just decades away! Can you imagine?
H.G. Wells-written 1930s futurist take on what the next hundred years might be like. It predicts World War II, but is wrong about everything else. That only makes it more offbeat, though. It was made in a time before The Bomb. Here, WWII lasts decades and leads to years of chaotic re-structuring in a civilization that looks like it got smacked with the apocalypse. In the late 1960s and early 70s, instead of trying on bell bottoms and listening to Sly and the Family Stone, people here are wearing rags and puttering around rubble and ruins from the 1930s. Instead of having lively conversations about Richard Nixon, Miles Davis, Norman Mailer, Jean-Luc Godard, Kent State or The Match Game, the…
Dear god was this boring. No characters to really grab on to until WAY into the film. Extremely and transparently preachy. Some of the visuals are interesting, but not enough to really make any of this worthwhile. Also interesting to note the wandering sickness very much pre-dating zombies as we know them today.
The beginning was good, the rest put me to sleep.
Like with The Thief of Baghdad, was struck by just how much Korda (and Menzies, I'm assuming) gets just what kind of spectacle is awe-inspiring, and how best the show it. However Thief also has real characters and actors, and doesn't rely on endless monologues to get through scenes. This is a very boring movie that is still compelling due to just how expensive it seems to be, with these incredible huge looking sets and hundreds of extras.
Those below are not available on the site (from what I can tell).
24 Frames Per Century
Black Something (Zellners)…
UPDATED: December 4, 2016
The Criterion Collection is a video distribution company that sells "important classic and contemporary films" in…