Time – the desolation of youth; milk spoiler; the oldest and deadliest enemy of mankind. Still, in movies, we can easily win time: by moving it back and forth, by jumping into the future or the past by simply editing. Filmmakers are constantly traveling through time, so it’s no coincidence that there are so many films in which this trick becomes an action.
But unfortunately for their protagonists, the best films about time travel often show us that time imprisonment is inevitable. Even when these protagonists seem to have found a way out, from natural wormholes to heretical machines, it usually turns out that their destinies are predetermined: they often end up stuck in time loops or simply dead. Time and death they are close companions.
Of course, this chaos turns into stunning spectator entertainment, so choose the best time travel movies without further ado.
Terminator 1 and 2
Terminator 1 i 2 are really completely different movies. In the first, Arnie – the terminator – is a villain. Our superiors machine-driven him back in time to kill a woman who would give birth to a child that would lead human resistance to victory. The man from the said resistance is sent back to stop Arnie. It’s a dark and strange story: a classic action film shot on a limited budget. The other, on the other hand, is high-budget extravagance, which contains perhaps the best special effects in the history of film in relation to their time. Here, Arnie, now the star of the hit film, demanded to play a good guy: He’s still a robot, but he’s defending a key kid from the icy and more advanced T-1000 robot.
The most famous art house film about time travel, The dock follows a man returned from dystopia after World War III to save the future and find the truth behind a traumatic memory of his past. The film, only 28 minutes long, is a simple series of black and white photographs in a hazy narrative, but still captivating. Terry Gilliam turned it around 12 monkeys, a wacky, vivid caper starring Bruce Willis and Brad Pitt, a similarly strange but tonally different film.
This modern sci-fi classic follows the alien “arrival” of giant, calm squid with an ink inscription. Before geopolitical squabbles can escalate the situation into a nuclear exchange, Amy Adams must translate the black squid pleas into American English. (Spoiler: Refers to time travel.) This visually stunning film is based The story of your lifea short film by Ted Chiang, one of the best living sci-fi writers. The film is a great introduction to his writing.
A classic starring Bill Murray in his best relaxed form. Murray plays a cheeky journalist who wakes up one morning and finds himself stuck in a time loop on Groundhog Day (and, yes, that’s where the term comes from). Fear gives way to joy when he realizes that he is now an omniscient god. This then gives way to boredom because he lives infinitely many times the same day, and Murray must understand why he is cursed. Still a touching and thoughtful comedy.
This is truly a time travel film that will beat them if you really want to get into the queen and time travel. Two engineers accidentally discover a side effect of the “A-to-B” causal loop: They can basically travel back a short distance and start using it to make huge money in the stock market. What follows is a highly technical and philosophical view of the implications of time travel.
Looper is just an impenetrable, fantastic action film: a compelling world, sketched in just under two hours, with fun and interesting characters. Joseph Gordon Levitt plays a contract killer who kills and postpones his targets in the past, to avoid revelation in the future. Bruce Willis plays his older self whom Levitt is tasked with killing. The real aspect of time travel isn’t really the point of the film: writer Rian Johnson contrasted it directly Example, where time travel rules are so important; Looper is instead conceived as a character thriller.
One of the highest grossing anime movies of all time, Your name is a smooth, always a bit hollow thing, but undoubtedly fantastic fun. Two school children swap bodies every night, quarrel over the destruction of life, and then eventually fall in love. They have to fight through time to save the city from an apocalyptic catastrophe. The animation is beautiful, painterly and fluid, the music from Radwimps is a great pop of ear worms, and the story is a real tear gas canister.
Where time travels Tenet remained largely unexplained, in Interstellar Nolan seems to be actually interested in teaching his audience and is doing an astonishing job showing some of the implications of Einstein’s theory of general relativity. The dialogue of the film may be a bit saccharistic and harsh, but a visit to a mountain of high waves, where years pass like minutes, is just a great piece of cinema, worth the price of entry.
A cult classic that rocketed Jake Gyllenhaal to great glory. It’s one of those highly conceptual films that bombards you, but it’s really not as smart as it thinks it is. You better just sit back and let them wash you, including, of course, Frank, the cult black rabbit, who tells Gyllenhaal that the world will end in 28 days. It is also an important artifact of a particular section of millennial culture: any Generation Z cultural critic trying to understand millennial neuroses should certainly add this film to their research.
Planet of the Apes
Original Planet of the Apes is a deeply strange film – there is now something disturbing about monkeys: the prosthetic make-up techniques by artist John Chambers were revolutionary at the time. But while the pre-bands with Andy Serkis are certainly a lot more action, the original had to be on the list because it contains the most famous “passenger turnaround” in cinema. Charlton Heston’s latest discovery breaking his fists on the beach at the end of the film is parodied to death, mostly The Simpsons. (Which also created fantastic musical adaptation film.)
This story originally appeared WIRED UK.
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