The Time Machine

Director: George Pal

Cast: Rod Taylor, Yvette Mimieux, Alan Young, Sebastian Cabot, Tom Helmore, Whit Bissell, Doris Lloyd, Bob Barran, Josephine Powell, Wah Chang, James Skelly

In England, on the eve of 1900, George Wells (Taylor) reveals the nature of his new invention to a group of close friends. He demonstrates a desktop model of a device he claims can travel through the fourth dimension, time. His closest friend, David Filby (Young), advises him to accept the chronological nature of time. The others are intrigued but skeptical. After his friends leave, George steps into a full-size version of his device, powers it up, and cautiously sets the controls. The time machine works, and George is thrilled when he begins to see the future, delighted by the technological advances and discouraged by the disasters of war. He accidentally sets the machine’s controls to their forward limit and comes to a stop many thousands of years into the future. George finds himself in a world where mankind has evolved into two races, the playful, good-looking, and friendly Eloi on the surface, and the brutish, misshapen, and aggressive Morlocks underground. George’s time machine is taken by the Morlocks, and George is befriended by the Eloi, who pass their time playing, dancing and swimming. A beautiful girl, Weena (Mimieux), becomes George’s closest companion. George is puzzled because the Eloi live a life of leisure and have abundant food and resources, but none of them seem to work, or have any kind of technical expertise. They have little use for the spinning disks that store some of their past knowledge. George is horrified when he finds that it is the brutish Morlocks that provide the society’s infrastructure. They work underground to support the Eloi lifestyle, and periodically summon them to a cave to be slaughtered. The Morlocks are cannibals. George has to find a way to get back to the time machine, and a way out of the nightmarish situation 800,000 years in the future. Special effects by Gene Warren. Based on the H. G. Wells novel of the same name.

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