Thursday, September 01, 2016


Time is hazy, so the narrator insists, and tends to tug us "toward all yesterdays as strongly as all the unborn tomorrows that stretch toward all eternity." With that to chew on, we find ourselves in a time travel lab with a handful of scientists who are feeling threatened by the new owner (Scott Brady) of the scientific company they work for. Through a portal, they can see and photograph the past 24 hours ago, and are now working on seeing 24 hours into the future. When Brady decides he wants to repurpose their lasers for military use, moderately studly scientist Anthony Eisley rebels and sets everything at full power, so the entire lab is sent hurtling into the far future, the year 6968 to be exact. While the young and attractive scientists in the present (Andy Davis [pictured below] and Tracy Olsen) try to find the lab workers "in whatever dimension of space or time they've gone," Eisley, Brady, and the gang wind up in the middle of a war between what's left of the earthlings who have mostly destroyed the world through nuclear war and pale aliens who have arrived from their dying planet. The chief alien spokesperson (PoupĂ©e Gamin—yes. that is the actress' name, pictured at right) tells Eisley to go back to 1967 and warn mankind not to experiment with laser weapons—which of course doesn't sit well with Brady. As the lab heads back through the space-time continuum, they see another object on a collision course with them and Brady destroys it. Overshooting their own time, they wind up back around 1,000,000 BC; Brady grabs up lots of volcanic gems and decides to leave without the other scientists, but [possible SPOILER, though this is easy to see coming] on his way, he and the lab are destroyed by, yep, the Brady that was heading back to the past. Somehow, Eisley and fellow scientist Gigi Perreau still wind up in the lab and make it back to 1967, but they soon discover that something has gone very wrong…

This, another of my summer sci-fi B-movie viewings, is an uncredited remake of THE TIME TRAVELERS, from the story to the largely one-set setting to the bizarre time-loop ending. Some of the plot details differ and this one seems to have been produced on a lower budget than the earlier film. The lingo used is particularly convoluted here, and sometimes the dialogue is delivered as though the actors saw it for the first time moments before the scene was shot. Use of stock footage during the chaotic time-travel scene is worthy of Ed Wood, especially an oddly long sequence of D-Day footage. But still this manages to be fun much of the time, sometimes in a bad-movie way. Brady, a tough-guy actor in lots of westerns, seems to think the whole enterprise is a waste of his time, and he can't even be bothered to tuck his shirt in during the last half of the movie—it may have been on purpose but it didn't seem in character. Eisley and Perreau are OK, and I found Andy Davis to be rather fetching, though all he has to do is stand at a desk and try to keep track of what year the lab is in. Lyle Waggoner plays an alien, though I did not recognize him. On balance, bad-movie fun. [Streaming]

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