When Kirby inherits only one thing from his millionaire uncle: a pocket watch that can stop time. Only, the bad guys know that he has it, and will do anything to take it from him. But they ...
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When Kirby inherits only one thing from his millionaire uncle: a pocket watch that can stop time. Only, the bad guys know that he has it, and will do anything to take it from him. But they don't know that he's found the girl of his dreams, and she's got a sense of humor that, when combined with the watch, is devastating.Written by
You know how kids -- especially boys -- grow up fantasizing about having a particular superpower? Flying, X-ray vision, or that thing Superman does with the Earth to move time backward?
Well, I've been plagued into adulthood by the fantastic power posited by this ultra-trashy, made-for-*SYNDICATED*-TV movie ever since I saw it at age nine. The idea of a watch that stops time for everyone except the bearer is so original, so powerful, that as I near my 30s I still fantasize almost daily over what I'd do with it.
The execution of the gimmick was so simple, F/X-wise, but remarkably memorable. The first time Hays's character receives the watch -- an inheritance from his mad-scientist uncle -- he's on a beach, trying to wind it. But upon turning the hands past a certain time, everything around him freezes, turning red, and the only sound he hears is the now-amplified ticking of the watch. He sees frisbees and a volleyball frozen in midair, people running in midstride, and the woman to whom he was talking moments ago (Pam Dawber) frozen, mid-sentence. He can wander freely throughout the reddened scene and move anything he wants, which will then freeze in position until he "unfreezes" time. Naturally, given the setting and the trash-TV nature of the movie, one of his first stunts is to untie a volleyballer's bikini top so when he unfreezes time, it falls to the ground.
Later, once the film has established the concept, we see Hays turn the watch and just instantaneously disappear, then reappear in the place he ran off to while time was frozen -- effectively giving us the POV of the non-watch-possessing bystander.
Since I haven't seen the movie since I was a preadolescent, I have it filed in the same "youthful indiscretion"/"trashy on reflection" category in which I have filed 'Cats' and 'The Greatest American Hero.' Any boy who was a fan of the TV megahit 'Mork and Mindy' probably tuned into 'The Girl...' for then-hottie Dawber, and Hays was himself on a warm streak, having just appeared in the seminal comedy 'Airplane!' Last bit of trivia: This film was apparently successful enough in syndication (in New York, where I grew up, it was on a pre-WB channel 11/WPIX) to spawn a sequel, with the even more embarrassing title, 'The Girl, the Gold Watch, and Dynamite!' I don't see that title anywhere on the IMDb, so I must assume it has been utterly forgotten.
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