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The Time Travelers (1964)

Not Rated | | Sci-Fi | 29 October 1964 (USA)
In 1964, a group of scientists create a portal that takes them to a barren, mutant inhabited, Earth in the year 2071.

Director:

Ib Melchior

Writers:

Ib Melchior (screenplay), Ib Melchior (story) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Preston Foster ... Dr. Erik von Steiner
Philip Carey ... Steve Connors
Merry Anders ... Carol White
John Hoyt ... Varno
Dennis Patrick ... Councilman Willard
Joan Woodbury ... Gadra
Delores Wells Delores Wells ... Reena
Steve Franken ... Danny McKee
Berry Kroeger ... Preston
Gloria Leslie Gloria Leslie ... Councilwoman
Molly Glessing Molly Glessing ... Android
Peter Strudwick Peter Strudwick ... The Mutant
J. Edward McKinley ... Raymond
Margaret Seldeen Margaret Seldeen ... Miss Hollister
Forrest J. Ackerman ... Square-frame technician
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Storyline

In 1964, a team of scientists is trying to develop a view screen into the future. What they in fact get is a portal and they soon find themselves on the other side, 107 years into the future in the year 2071, when the portal collapses. The Earth of the future is barren and they are soon attacked by mutated humans but rescued by a group of scientists who are building a spaceship to take them to a new planet. They learn that much of Earth was destroyed as the result of a nuclear war. When it's determined that the visitors from the past cannot be included in the planned voyage, they work furiously to rebuild the portal and return to their own time before departure day. Meanwhile, always under the threat of attack from the mutants , friendships are formed and they learn of life in the future including the use of robots for menial tasks. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

You are in the Future before it happens! See more »

Genres:

Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 October 1964 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Depths of the Unknown See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$250,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Pathécolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Production started in 1963, with the working title Time Trap. Ib Melchior's story line couldn't withstand the meager budget. Later reviewers regarded the production as secondary. "In spite of the low budget, this still looks pretty good thanks to intelligent use of the resources available. The portal the scientists create, as Danny discovers, is more than a mere window on the coming years, because they can actually walk through it and pass through the decades to exist in the future." See more »

Goofs

When the characters return to their lab they find they are unable to move any matter. Yet the characters are still able to move and breathe. If they were actually unable to affect any matter, as they clearly establish and go to lengths to explain, the air would not move out of the way when they walked nor would it move in/out of their lungs. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Varno: We have been constantly surveying every possible planetary body in our solar system. Every planet. Every one of their moons. Even some of the smaller asteroids, but... This is the last; Titan, one of Saturn's largest atmosphere-carrying moons.
Dr. Erik von Steiner: Robot surveyors?
Dr. Varno: Yes.
Dr. Erik von Steiner: You don't seem encouraged.
Dr. Varno: The analysis shows a complete negative response. I'd expected it.
Dr. Erik von Steiner: But you still maintain surveillance. Why?
Dr. Varno: Information, Dr. Von Steiner. Knowledge. We feel we can never have enough of that in the new world...
See more »

Connections

Remade as Journey to the Center of Time (1967) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Highly imaginative time travel saga from the Sixties
18 October 2010 | by henri sauvageSee all my reviews

Three scientists and the inevitable everyday Joe are catapulted over a hundred years into the future by a lab accident, into a post-apocalyptic nightmare in which atomic war has devastated the planet. Pursued by a band of savage mutants, they're rescued by the last few humans, a small group of scientists and technicians engaged in a race against time to construct a starship and get away before the more numerous mutants can break through their defenses.

None of these elements is particularly new to the genre, but writer/director Ib Melchior manages to combine them into a fairly entertaining and occasionally original piece of "upper low-budget" sf cinema. This isn't to say that the pace doesn't occasionally lag a bit toward the middle, with some sequences feeling like they were inserted just to pad out the running time. (Like a totally unnecessary scene devoted to what's supposed to be a demonstration of their futuristic "matter transmitter", which is clearly just a stage magician's prop.)

Mostly, though, there's scarcely a moment wasted in exposition or character development, as the story barrels along to its truly unique conclusion.

Set design, miniatures, costuming and makeup -- particularly the androids -- are surprisingly good, for its budget. The optical effects are sparse but imaginative. Though it's early in his distinguished career, having Vilmos Zsigmond behind the camera also contributes considerably to making this a much more polished and expensive-looking production than you'd normally expect to see from American International.


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