Time After Time (1979 film)

Time After Time (1979 film)

name = Time After Time

image_size = 200px
caption = "Time After Time" movie poster
director = Nicholas Meyer
producer = Steve Hayes
writer = Karl Alexander (story) and Steve Hayes (story),
Nicholas Meyer (screenplay)
starring = Malcolm McDowell
David Warner
Mary Steenburgen
cinematography = Paul Lohmann
editing = Donn Cambern
distributor = Orion Pictures
released = August 31 1979
runtime = 112 min
country = USA
language = English
imdb_id = 0080025
music = Miklós Rózsa
awards =
budget =

"Time After Time" is a 1979 American feature film produced by Orion Pictures, starring Malcolm McDowell, Mary Steenburgen, David Warner, and Charles Cioffi. It was written and directed by Nicholas Meyer.


The film opens in 1893 London. Popular science fiction author and essayist H.G. Wells (McDowell) unveils a time machine to gathered dinner guests, the same device Wells fictionalized in his novel "The Time Machine". Before he is able to demonstrate the machine, police constables arrive at his house, hot on the trail of Jack the Ripper, who has killed nearby. Investigating Wells' guests, the constables determine that his physician friend, John Leslie Stevenson (Warner), may be the killer. Stevenson uses the time machine to escape capture by traveling to 1979 San Francisco. When the machine returns to 1893 (due to a fail-safe feature), Wells pursues him, but has difficulty adapting to the future, which he had expected to be a futuristic utopia. These difficulties begin with his ineffectual use of a false name taken from a popular literary character from his time, which he'd mistakenly thought would be long forgotten—Sherlock Holmes.

While trying locate Stevenson, Wells meets and falls in love with bank employee Amy Robbins (Steenburgen). The pair try to find Stevenson, who has resumed his killings in San Francisco. Confronted by his friend in a hotel, Stevenson confesses that he finds modern society to be pleasingly bloody; he remarks that in 1893, he was a monster, whereas in 1979, he is "an amateur."

To prove to Amy that his time machine is real, Wells takes her three days into the future. Amy is then horrified to find a newspaper with her own obituary, revealing that she is to be the Ripper's fifth victim. Wells and Amy go back three days to try to change history, but he is arrested for suspicion of the serial killings and Amy is left unprotected. As Wells unsuccessfully tries to convince the police of Amy's danger, Amy attempts to hide from Stevenson. When the police finally enter her apartment, they find the body of a brutally slain woman. Wells mourns Amy for dead, until he discovers that Amy is still alive, held hostage by Stevenson. (The victim had been Amy's friend Carol, whom she'd invited to dinner.). Stevenson attempts another escape in the time machine, and releases Amy following Herbert's pleas for her freedom. Wells removes a device (the vaporizing equalizer) from the exterior of the machine's cabin, which causes Stevenson to vanish into infinity without the machine. H.G. Wells and Amy then board the machine themselves and return to Wells' own time. History records that the two marry; Amy Robbins was, in fact, the name of Wells' second wife.


*Malcolm McDowell as H. G. Wells
*David Warner as John Leslie Stevenson, aka Jack the Ripper
*Mary Steenburgen as Amy Robbins
*Charles Cioffi as Police Lt. Mitchell


The screenplay was based on the novel of the same name, written at the same time as Meyer's screenplay by his University of Iowa associate, Karl Alexander. [ [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0080025/trivia IMDb Trivia List] ]

Director Nicholas Meyer's first choice for H.G. Wells was Derek Jacobi. However, the studio had wanted Richard Dreyfuss for the role. Meyer was happy to finally cast Malcolm McDowell since he was a big fan of Lindsay Anderson. [ [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0080025/trivia IMDb Trivia List] ]

The role of Amy Robbins went to Mary Steenburgen. However, the studio had wanted Sally Field. Director Nicholas Meyer's first choice was his girlfriend, Shelley Hack. She reportedly didn't want to become famous due to her boyfriend - but she did accept a small role as a docent at the museum Wells transports into. [ [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0080025/trivia IMDb Trivia List] ]

Nicholas Meyer's first choice to play the Ripper was Edward Fox. Mick Jagger was originally considered for the part of Jack the Ripper, but Meyer couldn't see him convincingly playing a Harley Street surgeon, John Leslie Stevenson's career when he wasn't stalking Whitechapel. [ [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0080025/trivia IMDb Trivia List] ]

Malcolm McDowell and Mary Steenburgen met and fell in love during the filming of "Time After Time," and they later married. [ [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0080025/trivia IMDb Trivia List] ]

Corey Feldman appeared in the museum at the start when H.G first arrives in the future.


"Imagine! A scientific genius named H.G. Wells stalks a criminal genius named Jack the Ripper across time itself, in the most ingenious thriller of our time..."|


Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA1980: Saturn Award Best Actress (Mary Steenburgen), Best Music (Miklós Rózsa), Best Writing (Nicholas Meyer)

Avoriaz Fantastic Film Festival1980: Antenne II Award (Nicholas Meyer), Grand Prize (Nicholas Meyer)

External links

*imdb title|id=0080025|title=Time After Time
* [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VnT-9-EWDxQ "Time After Time" Trailer]
* [http://www.colemanzone.com/Time_Machine_Project/time%20after%20time.htm Images from "Time After Time" (1/3)]
* [http://www.colemanzone.com/Time_Machine_Project/time%20after%20time(2).htm Images from "Time After Time" (2/3)]
* [http://www.colemanzone.com/Time_Machine_Project/time%20after%20time(3).htm Images from "Time After Time" (3/3)]


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