All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1177. 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.
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.
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…
A “hard” sci-fi film about the collapse and rebirth of society in the future. The imagery and special effects are fantastic, but the ideas are naïve, and there’s no unifying human story that threads through the narrative and gives it dramatic interest.
I like H.G. Wells, but this pseudo science fiction tale was too preachy. After a chemical weapon in a future war decimates the planet, society evolves into a cold, authoritarian society ruled by technocrats. And according to the film, this is the best possible outcome. A few nice scenes can't hide what a bummer the film is.
The four stars are for the visual design and the big ideas, even though the delivery is dreadful. That absurd audacity is part of the charm though. Silly modernist intellectuals!
La producción de Korda es impresionante, los escenarios son magníficos, pero la historia no terminó por convencerme. Es muy padre ver cómo va resolviendo estilísticamente el espacio temporal tan grande que abarca (de finales de los 60 hasta 2036), pero sus idas y vueltas, cambios de personajes, y en general la forma en que está narrada, me pareció algo pesada. Creo que por el aspecto visual es una película que sí hay que conocer, pero tampoco la recomendaría con entusiasmo.
Uhhhhh...I think this movie's outta my league intelligence-wise but it was still an interesting watch. I didn't really understand where the plot was going at first but once I got the hang of it it made me wanna read the novel. I mostly had trouble comprehending the film's philosophies because the audio quality was crappy. I wanna watch this again in the future when I can find a better copy
In which H.G. Wells predicts the next 100 years from the vantage point of a 1936, spending time in a single city during the outbreak of a new great war in 1940, the feudal aftermath in 1970 and man's first attempted moon shot in 2036(!).
"Things to Come" is a curious film. As a vision of the future it gets one thing right (although predicting a war in Europe in 1936 probably wasn't a stretch) and lots wrong. As a prediction of the future of cinema's concerns it's far more interesting. The brief glimpse of "the walking plague" strangely foreshadows zombie movies, the society clinging to the rubble under a petty king in the 1970's is echoed in any number…
Things to Come is in many ways a predecessor to a lot of moden big budget science fiction films---BIG IDEAS....little emphasis on characters. But seeing this formula in action in 1936 is absolutely fascinating. Sure, the characters aren't anything to wave a stick at but on just about every other level the film excels. Visually, it's wonderful to look at from production design to costumes to cinematography. It's hugely socially relevant for the time period (predating and kind of predicting WW2), with a lot of the social commentary you'd expect from an H.G. Wells idea. It's also tense as hell, especially in the first half which is exhilarating to watch. Hell, even zombies make an early appearance! Ultimately, Things to Come is an unheralded science fiction all-time classic.
Images of an alternative universe where History took a different but believable turn around 1936. It's an imagined future that's so far ahead of itself, that it's WWII not WWIII that causes the breakdown of civilisation. It's as close to unvarnished H. G. Wells that cinema ever got, Wells having struck a deal with Alexander Korda not to have a word of his script changed. So, its vision is utopian, the world ruled by a benevolent dictatorship of science and technology. It might be hard to swallow these days, but it's not often that one comes away from a sci-fi film feeling optimistic about humanity's future. Also, because it's pushing an ideology about the necessity of the relentless pursuit of…
I'm blown away by the prescience of the script (by H.G. Wells) and then the film itself, predating the World it predicts by just a few years.
The miniatures and effects are also ahead of their time, and in some cases are still confounding as how they pulled them off.
So -- points for those aspects.
But it earns demerits for the heavy-handed and melodramatic message, dialog, and performances.
The entire Criterion collection organized by spine number.
I don't know why I did this.
Number I've Seen: 196/776 (25%)
UPDATED: November 23, 2015
The Criterion Collection is a video distribution company that sells "important classic and contemporary films" in…