7.0/10
58,538
206 user 155 critic

Time Bandits (1981)

Trailer
3:09 | Trailer
A young boy accidentally joins a band of time travelling dwarves, as they jump from era to era looking for treasure to steal.

Director:

Terry Gilliam
Reviews
Popularity
3,205 ( 211)
1 win & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Cleese ... Robin Hood
Sean Connery ... King Agamemnon / Fireman
Shelley Duvall ... Dame Pansy / Pansy
Katherine Helmond ... Mrs. Ogre
Ian Holm ... Napoleon
Michael Palin ... Vincent
Ralph Richardson ... Supreme Being
Peter Vaughan ... Winston the Ogre
David Warner ... Evil Genius
David Rappaport ... Randall
Kenny Baker ... Fidgit
Malcolm Dixon ... Strutter
Mike Edmonds ... Og
Jack Purvis ... Wally
Tiny Ross ... Vermin
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Storyline

Intrigued by history but neglected by his parents, Kevin, an eleven-year-old schoolboy, gets the chance to make his dream come true when a band of six time-travelling dwarfs appears out of thin air in his bedroom. Having stolen the Supreme Being's one-of-a-kind map of time and space, the audacious time-bandits whisk Kevin off on an exciting journey to the depths of history, skipping from one era to another. Now, to further complicate matters, the dangerous arch-rival known as the Evil Genius is hot on their trail, bent on getting his hands on the precious map. But, who would have thought that Kevin's seemingly unexceptional room was the entrance to a mysterious wormhole and the portal to a marvellous world of adventure? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

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


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Tony Jay and John Cleese who did Robin Hood and Supreme Being later worked on different projects of The Jungle Book for Disney. Cleese was in The Jungle Book (1994) playing Dr. Plumford and Jay voiced Shere Khan in TaleSpin (1990). See more »

Goofs

As the dwarfs are finding a way into the keep of Castiglione, a party of 5 people can be seen executed. In the next shot, the movie goes back to the dwarfs as they are entering the keep.. The following shot, you see the same 5 people getting executed again, only from a closer angle. 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 had to...
[...]
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Crazy Credits

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

Alternate Versions

Early video versions omit the following:
  • The theater manager introducing The Great Rumbozo; More dialogue from Evil, Benson and Robert in their very first scene; The scene of Pansy and Vincent on the Titanic is extended.
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Connections

Referenced in The Goldbergs: The Darryl Dawkins Dance (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Me And My Shadow
Arranged by John Du Prez
Composed by Billy Rose (as Rose), Al Jolson (as Jolson), and Dave Dreyer (as Dreyer)
Published by Francis Day & Hunter
Performed by David Rappaport, Kenny Baker, Malcolm Dixon, Mike Edmonds, Jack Purvis, and Tiny Ross
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User Reviews

 
Imaginative fantasy about time travels in which our heroes take on several adventures and dangers
11 January 2014 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

This wonderful flick deal with a little boy (Craig Warnock won the role after a wide search for the right child actor) and six dwarfs (Kenny Baker , David Rappaport , Jack Purvis , among others) who are chased by the Supreme Being through time and space . As the kid accidentally joins a band as they jump from time-period to time-period looking for treasure to steal . All of them travel back in time via a map that charts a course through holes holes in the fabric of the universe . Along the way they meet historical characters such as Napoleon (49-year-old Ian Holm plays the 26-year-old Bonaparte) , Robin Hood (John Cleese , though Michael Palin wrote the role of Robin for himself, but Cleese wanted to play him), Supreme Being (Ralph Richardson) and King Agamemnon (the gold masks of Agamemnon's priests are replicas of a king's deathmask, found by Heinrich Schliemann at Mycenae in 1876 , it is in Museum of Atenas). At the end the motley group contends the Evil Genius (David Wagner , the apparatus on his head was influenced by H.R. Giger's work on Alien) .

This is an imaginative , glamorous , chaotic fantasy based on the wonderful trips carried out by a group of adventurers along with a young English schoolboy . Fantastic film contains sense of adventure , thrills , and lots of imagination . From start to finish fantasy , action and delightful adventure are continued . Exciting and interesting screenplay written by Michael Palin and and Terry Gilliam of Monty Python fame . Marvelous special effects are visually stunning and magnificently realized with no computer generator . Starring a considerable cast of top-names performers such as John Cleese as Robin Hood , Shelley Duvall as Dame , Ian Holm as Napoleon , Michael Palin as Vincent , Ralph Richardson as Supreme Being and David Warner as Evil and a young Jim Broadbent as a TV host . Special mention to Sean Connery as King Agamemnon and Fireman , Gilliam did not originally intend to cast Sean Connery as King Agamemnon , he merely wrote in the screenplay that when Agamemnon took off his helmet that he looked "exactly like Sean Connery." To Gilliam's surprise, the script found its way into Connery's hands and Connery subsequently expressed interest in doing the film.

This big-budgeted , under-appreciated film achieved a limited hit at box office and panned by some critics ; however , today is very well considered . Colorful and glimmer cinematography by Peter Biziou . Thrilling as well as evocative original music by Mike Moran . The motion picture was imaginatively directed by Terry Gilliam . Terry shot the film in low camera angles throughout in order to give the audience the perspective of a dwarf or a child . Gilliam is an expert on wonderful , surreal atmospheres (Adventures of Baron Munchausen , Brazil , Fisher king , Doctor Parnasus). He is member of the comedy group "Monty Python" along with John Cleese, Michael Palin, Terry Jones, Eric Idle and Graham Chapman. ¨Time bandits¨ might be described as an extraordinary fantasy full of imagination and color . It's a tale for teens and adults in which entertainment and amusement are guaranteed . Rating : Good , better than average . Worthwhile watching .


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Handmade Films Website

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 November 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Time Bandits See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,507,356, 8 November 1981

Gross USA:

$42,365,581

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$42,368,025
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

HandMade Films See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (original)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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