Sunday, January 29, 2006

Things To Come (1936)

You know actually, this poster nails it right perfect...

Post-Apocalyptic Sci-Fi (UK)

Starring: Raymond Massey (The Scarlet Pimpernel; The Prisoner of Zenda), Edward Chapman (Murder!)

Directed By: William Cameron Menzies

Overview: This is the film adaptation of H.G. Wells' vision of the next 100 years, from war to a fragmented peace, to a bright utopian future (or is it?).

Acting: Overdone. When the film started, it opened like a play, with all the posturing and posing, seemed fake. There were so many akimbo poses, I was starting to think this was a Korusawa film. You'd think diplomats would be more diplomatic too. I had issues with the direction, for sure.
Rating: 5

Cinematography: The factory shots of the 'building a future' that served as a transition to the last act were stunning. The great war has some scary scenes and there was definitely an effort put forth to make the visual spectacle appealing. I don't know, just didn't do it for me, but it was decent.
Rating: 6

Script: The writing was good at parts, mediocre most of the time and occasionally completely non-nonsensical, and / or atrocious. Perhaps this is more mood related, but I really don't think people would ever talk the way these people did. The ideas expressed didn't seem that original. Whether Wells said it first or not doesn't matter.
Rating: 5

Plot: Post-Apocalyptic should be more about the 'right after', as well as the specific, rather than a common 'Everytown' concept of predictable distribution of power struggles, or worse yet a view 100 years later, after all of war's repercussions have all passed. It started great, the whole 40 years of war, then it got a little worse with the rebuilding of city states, then a little worse with this hyper-technological future.
Rating: 5

Mood: The overall feel of the film has an occasional moment of wonder, but occasional was all. This was innovative at the time I'm sure, and the future was all 'indoor moving sidewalks and floating vehicles and space aged design', but I couldn't help not believing the way things progressed.
Rating: 6

Eeesh, it's like disco meets Logan's Run...

Overall Rating: 54% (Came and Went)

Aftertaste: The future is damn bright, but keep it close to the actual events if you're going to call it Post-Apocalyptic. Otherwise call it Sci-Fi and be done with it. Urgh. I preferred the company to the story, that's for sure. I'm glad I saw it, but only because of my passion for film, and for the Post-Apocalyptic, not for the content.