Time Machine, The
by Ron Peregrin (07-24-2002)
Simon Wells, son of H.G. Wells, gives us a flashy version of this 1960ís classic. Although this film has been getting lack-luster reviews, I bought the DVD sight unseen and was pleasantly surprised.
Attempting to change the past, Alexander Hartdegen (Guy Pearce) is launched into the future. Alex is a scientist, physics teacher and inventor in New York during the late 1800ís. He is about to marry his love Emma (Sienna Guillory) when tragedy strikes and she is killed. Alex travels into the past in an attempt to alter fate, only to witness the same tragedy under different circumstances. To answer his question of why he cannot change the past, he travels into the future. During an accident aboard his time machine Alex is knocked unconscious and is propelled to the year 802,701.
Here he discovers the subterranean Morlocks which feed on the humans above. Alex must now fight to save both himself and the human race from extinction.
Yet again, DreamWorks provides us with a great soundtrack. This is a soundtrack that is filled with lots of accurate surround sound that really brings this movie alive. From the busy New York streets to the jungles of the future and the underground Morlock caverns, the surrounds are always active. This is a detailed LFE track with lots of tight, hard-hitting impact. My only complaint is with the center channel which seemed overly pronounced. Dropping the volume two clicks seemed to solve this problem. The 5.1 DTS track will surely please.
DreamWorks provides us with yet another excellent transfer. The picture is extremely detailed and clean with excellent black levels. The color is vibrant, very soft and warm. Some shots of New York are simply gorgeous and demand a second viewing.
With a decent amount of extras, we get a look into the visual effects from the Stan Winston studios on the creation of the Morlocks. Simon Wells story boards put to music and commentaries from the director, producer and visual effects supervisor. My favorite extra is that of the creation of the Time Machine. This takes you though the design of the machine which took over a year to complete.
I found this remake to be very enjoyable. A fun Sci-Fi fantasy with some great special effects and beautiful scenery. Containing an impressive audio track and a few changes in the story from the original to keep my interested throughout. This will not become a classic like the original, but it is sure to please nonetheless. If youíre a fan of H.G. Wells, add this one to your collection. Otherwise, give it a rent first.
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