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Time Bandits (1981)

7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 38,396 users  
Reviews: 164 user | 98 critic

A young boy accidentally joins a band of dwarves as they jump from era to era looking for treasure to steal.

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Title: Time Bandits (1981)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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King Agamemnon / Fireman
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Dame Pansy / Pansy
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Strutter
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Og
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Vermin
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Storyline

Kevin, an imaginative child, goes on a time-travelling adventure with a bunch of treasure-hunting dwarves, who have "borrowed" a map to the Universe's time holes from The Supreme Being. Written by Stewart M. Clamen <clamen@cs.cmu.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

treasure | map | fortress | evil | dwarf | See more »

Taglines:

...they didn't make history, they stole it! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 November 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Aikavarkaat  »

Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$42,365,600 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (original release)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

On the wall of Kevin's bedroom can be seen a drawing of Dr. Bertram X. Fegg, a character created by Michael Palin and Terry Jones for their "Dr. Fegg" books, drawn by Martin Honeysett. See more »

Goofs

During a storm in a forest towards the end of the Robin Hood sequence, just as Randall says "don't rush me!", a stagehand is visible to the right of the frame operating an off-screen smoke machine. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Announcer: Yes, folks... Moderna Designs present the latest in kitchen luxury. The Moderna Wonder Major All Automatic Convenience Center-ette gives you all the time in the world to do the things you really want to do... An infrared freezer-oven complex that can make you a meal from packet to plate in 15 1/2 seconds.
Kevin's Mother: Morrisons have got one that can do that in eight seconds.
Kevin's Father: Oh?
Kevin's Mother: Block of ice to Beef Bourguignon in eight seconds. Lucky things.
Kevin: Dad, did you know that the ancient Greek warriors ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of the credits the scene where the Bandits have their photo taken is replayed. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ban the Sadist Videos! (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Dream Away
(uncredited)
Written by George Harrison
Performed by George Harrison, Dave Mattacks, Alan Jones, Mike Moran,
Ray Cooper, Billy Preston, Syreeta and Sarah Ricor
Produced by George Harrison, Ray Cooper and Phil McDonald
See more »

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User Reviews

History By Way of Gilliam
11 February 2000 | by (NC) – See all my reviews

For my money, Terry Gilliam is one of the more innovative, creative, and fantastical directors of the last two decades. His films easily bear his stamp of absurdist humour, witty dialogue, sheer fantasy, dream-like sequences, and always a generous dose of black comedy. Time Bandits is certainly no exception, but rather a stepping stone for greater works such as The Fisher King and the wonderful Brazil. The film tells the story of a group of dwarf-like "crooks" who leave their jobs with God(the Supreme Being) for a life of crime via a map they have "stolen" from their job place. This map holds all the secrets to time holes in the fabric of creation. Thus the bearers of the map can go forward and back in time as they please. They use the map to steal, at which they have little skill, and become rich, at which they miserably fail. Gilliam transports them and us through time to meet such interesting notables as Robin Hood, Napoleon, Agammenon, and the Evil Genius(devil-like entity). The film is grand in its scope and still wanting, for it is tackling a story of epic proportions. Still, Gilliam delivers a pretty good film both visually stunning in certain sequences and brimming with philosophical questions such as the necessity of evil and the election of choice in life. The film is also very funny in many parts, due in large part to a great cast. The protagonists are all quite good. John Cleese plays as likable a Robin Hood to be seen with his almost overly polite manner. The best performances go to Ian Holm, playing a drunken Napoleon obsessed with his size, David Warner, playing the malevolent Evil Genius with relish, and lastly to Sir Ralph Richardson, playing the Supreme Being like a bureaucrat concerned with balancing payroll and the like. Gilliam explores the bureaucratic mentality with even more scope in his Brazil. All in all, Time Bandits is a fun and entertaining picture.


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