And the not-so-enjoyable time trips (#SFWApro)

ALIEN AGENDA: Under the Skin and Endangered Species (1999) are two more of that film series I’ve already seen the end of. More bad acting, more battles between Morphs, Grays and humans—the only gain is that some characters definitely do recur between episodes.

A HITCH IN TIME (1978) stars Patrick Troughton as an inventor who reluctantly accepts the help of two schoolkids in testing out his time machine, only to discover it isn’t running as smoothly as he anticipated. Stock British kids film. “If you don’t blow your nose, you’ll be called ‘Sniffy’ for the rest of your life.”

TIME BARBARIANS (1990) starts as a bad Conan knockoff in which the Barbarian of Doom rapes and murders the mate of the Barbarian of Justice, after which both race into the future where wouldn’t you know a Pretty Lookalike shows up? So while Justice remains dedicated to Revenge, he doesn’t apparently think any more about the brutal death of his lost love. Couldn’t get more formulaic if it tried. “Humans never change.”

YU-GI-OH: Bonds Beyond Time (2011) can be consigned to the appendix as it’s under an hour—while this does have a time-travel plot (three eras of game players vs. a time traveler out to crisis out the game), it bogs down in lengthy game technobabble. “We don’t care about your backstory.”

JE T’AIME JE T’AIME (1968) has a time-research team recruit a failed suicide as their guinea pig, on the theory he has nothing to lose; instead of a brief trip back into his past, he winds up bouncing randomly through the tragedy his recent life has become (as it’s by the director of Last Year at Marienbad, I suspect this is just a way to avoid a conventional narrative structure). Unimpressive, but better than Marienbad. “It’s been centuries—they’ve forgotten me.”

Moving to TV, THE ADVENTURES OF BRISCO COUNTY was a TV series starring Bruce Campbell as an old west bounty hunter whose arch-nemesis John Bly (the incredible underwhelming Billie Drago) turns out to be a time traveler from the future, seeking a McGuffin that will make him absolute tyrant in his own era. This series never worked for me, although part of that is undoubtedly the Western setting—still, Wild, Wild West did similar concepts and made them work great. “It’s just anatomy.”

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Filed under Movies, Now and Then We Time Travel, TV

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