1930s Things to Come (1936)

Published on January 25th, 2008 | by Chris

0

Things to Come (1936)


Reviewed by:
Rating:
3
On January 25, 2008
Last modified:October 6, 2012

Summary:

Things to Come gets a little dull at times, and honestly the acting is, well, lets just say its not all that, but if you can get past it and absorb the message and the incredible design and effects for its time.... it really is quite a piece of work, and shouldn't be missed!

 

Things to Come (1936)H.G. Wells really was a bloody genius, and a prophet in the vein of Jules Verne.  His book, The Shape of Things to Come, presents a sort of "history of the future," and predicts with uncanny accuracy some of the terrible aspects of warfare that would come to pass only a few short years later.

In Things to Come, the movie starts out in a fictional city called Everytown, but its safe to say that it serves as an allegory for any modern city.  In this version of the future, war is imminent, and eventually Everytown is bombed into oblivion in an offensive that can only be described as a prediction of the 1940 "Blitz" of London.

Over the next several decades, mankind fights and destroys itself, knocking us back into the stone age practically.  Plague kills what the war hasn't, and eventually, one hundred years later, man has rebuilt itself bigger and better than before.

Man has built itself a giant "gun" in which they intend to shoot a pair of explorers to the moon. In this future, though, the same traits which led them to destruction in their past, nearly destroy this ultimate act of progress and human exploration.

Now, you'll have to either laugh at or admire (or both) the designs of "the future" in the picture.  They are a vintage 30's futurist, "Flash Gordon" style type of thing.  From the flying aircraft carriers, to the airplane with the canopy built into the flight suit, to the giant spaceship flinging gun....  But hey, he couldn't have gotten everything right, could he!

Raymond Massey plays a dual role in the film, both in the "past" at the Everytown bombing and beyond, and in the future as the grandson of that man, responsible for righting the wrongs of his ancestors....

Things to Come gets a little dull at times, and honestly the acting is, well, lets just say its not all that, but if you can get past it and absorb the message and the incredible design and effects for its time....  it really is quite a piece of work, and shouldn't be missed!

Things to Come Things to Come
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Description

From H.G. Wells’ shocking book comes one of the most lavish science fiction epics ever to hit the screen! -In color for the first time and includes fully restored black & white version -Great Ray Harryhausen bonus features, Classic Sci-fi Toy Commercials

DVD Information

Binding: DVD
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
Audience Rating: Unrated
Brand: WELLSPRING/GENIUS
Manufacturer: Legend
Original Release Date:
Actors:
  • Raymond Massey
  • Edward Chapman
  • Ralph Richardson
  • Margaretta Scott
  • Cedric Hardwicke

Reviews

Customer Reviews
Average Customer Review

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THINGS TO COME FINALLY COMES TO BLU-RAY, June 22, 2013
By 
Casey62 (Chicago, Illinois) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Things to Come [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
If you're someone who appreciates classic movies, then chances are you've been gnashing your teeth over the fact that such an important title like THINGS TO COME (London Films, 1936) hasn't been properly distributed on home video. Well, you can sigh with relief because Criterion's new Blu-ray release of H.G. Wells' prophetic, groundbreaking production is a joy to behold. Finally, the dazzling imagery of this film emerges from the fog of public domain dupiness.

THINGS TO COME was an ambitious undertaking at the time, not only in its subject matter - that of predicting 100 years into the future - but also in its cinematic creation. This was the first time that a noted author was directly involved in every aspect of adapting one of his novels for the screen. Wells collaborated closely with everyone; from producer Alexander Korda and director William Cameron Menzies, to set designer Vincent Korda and composer Arthur Bliss, to cinematographer Georges Perinal and special effects... Read more
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This film is almost better as a history lesson than as entertainment - the ..., December 30, 2016
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This film is almost better as a history lesson than as entertainment - the threat of war in Europe clearly weighed heavily on the their minds.

One amazing contrast with today - the belief that only science and technology applied in an authoritarian way can bring society back from the brink. Things have certainly changed.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars THINGS TO COME (Colorized) - Definitely worth the price, June 17, 2008
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This review is from: Things to Come (DVD)
First of all, I just wish to clear the air for those fans who may be sitting on the edge wondering if they should buy another poor copy of THINGS TO COME, a wonderful but extremely dated film. This DVD transfer is about the best I have watched since I started collecting copies of this old movie.

All my prior VHS and DVD copies were made from terribly degraded originals and could barely be watched without feeling like you weren't forcing the situation. This DVD is far from perfect, but may possibly represent the best they can now do, and is worth the price in any case. I really don't know the business of digital enhancement, however, I suspect a more meticulous job of making the transfer might improve the DVD only slightly, after all these years of wear and tear on the film.

Viewers interested in the preservation of the original B&W film will be happy to read that an enhanced B&W copy has been included on the DVD. As a test, you might wish to turn down the color... Read more
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Things to Come (1936) Chris

Summary: Things to Come gets a little dull at times, and honestly the acting is, well, lets just say its not all that, but if you can get past it and absorb the message and the incredible design and effects for its time.... it really is quite a piece of work, and shouldn't be missed!

3.2


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About the Author

I've been watching war movies for probably 25 years now. Since December 2006 I've been sharing my habit and passion for these movies here on this site.



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