The Time Machine: Special Edition (1960)

Special Edition Extras:

Directed by George Pal
Written by David Duncan, based on the novel by H.G. Wells
Starring Rod Taylor, Alan Young, Yvette Mimieux, Sebastian Cabot, Tom Helmore

DVD Features:

Special Edition Extras:

Anamorphic: No.

My Advice: Own It.

George (Taylor) is an inventor. He's a quirky fellow, but he seems like an okay guy. He's asked his friends, including his bestest amigo Filby (Young), to come over for dinner shortly after New Year's Day in 1900. He figures he'll be late, but he wasn't planning on stumbling back into the dining room, half-dead with his clothes shredded. You see, he recently unveiled his last invention: a time machine, and decided to go into the future to see what it held for mankind. And it was a helluva trip.

Thus we have George Pal's classic interp of the Wells novel. And for a flick over forty years old, it holds up okay. There are certain things we overlook, simply because, well, it's a movie that's forty years old and we're too distracted by our amusement at the 60's sets and makeup and stuff. Sure, there's no way in hell the Eloi would turn out to look like Yvette Mimieux after 800 millennia. Sure, even if they did look like her they probably wouldn't wear those pink outfits. The rule is: if I don't think about it while I'm watching the film, if you can give me enough smoke and mirrors not to care, then you get away with it. And like I said, it's forty years old, give em a break. You can't have a film like this without a love interest! Whatever. It's just a fun flick.

As for the extras that come on the DVD, the big one, of course, is the documentary/retrospective. Hosted by Taylor, it has two major pieces of interest. First, it talks about what happened to the prop time machine after the film. The story of its eventual reclamation and restoration is quite interesting. So is the bit about its appearances up until the point of the documentary--early 90's. The second is an "epilogue" that was apparently filmed for the documentary, featuring both Taylor and Young reprising their roles when George comes back to try and save Filby from his fate. This isn't a bad little bit, I just wish there had been some kind of introduction to it. It suddenly starts and I found myself wondering if I was seeing unused footage from the original film. It was only when Taylor showed up looking his (then) present day age that I realized what was going on. That and the schmaltz factor of Taylor looking up to "talk to" the late George Pal every once in a while were the only detractors, but still the documentary manages to come out on the positive side.

Now, past the DVD, in this special edition set, there's a bunch of features that Creative Design Art has added. First, there is this ginormous archival box to hold everything in. It's nice with the DVD's cover on the front and side, along with gold-embossed lettering so you can keep track of it on your shelf. Also inside are the lobby cards and the one sheet, all looking extremely sharp. And beyond that, the limited edition film frame with the picture is nice and is worthy of framing for all of you tremendous fans of the flick.

The film is a fun one, and with this set by CDA--make no mistake, it is an item for collectors. But serious fans of the flick would wrong themselves by not plonking down the coin to own this behemoth.

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