Episode 173: Time Bandits (1981)

Here we are, still in “That Sure Was 1981” (because Mike was a spoilsport and said we shouldn’t do 1781 just because “movies hadn’t been invented yet” or some nonsense).  This week’s entry comes from the . . . unique mind of Terry Gilliam, a movie that would set the tone for . . . most of his other movies: “Time Bandits.”  It’s a story of a young boy and six dwarfs (not seven, because Disney owns every combination of the words “dwarfs” and “seven”) with a magical map that lets them travel through time, meeting famous historical figures and fantastical beasts and, well, robbing them blind.  And there are ogres, giants, firing squads, people getting their arms ripped off, and a dog exploding.  You know, for the kids! Who was this movie for? Well, obviously it was for us . . . to talk about . . . forty years later.  Terry Gilliam, you prescient mad genius, you! So come, listen in, and find out what the heck Sean Connery and Sir Flippin’ Ralph Richardson are doing in this movie! And whether we should turn peas into beans! Jolly good!

Poll question (yes, it’s the same as last time for Stuff and Reasons):  What movie cameo by a movie star or other famous figure caught you most by surprise or was the most fun?

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4 thoughts on “Episode 173: Time Bandits (1981)”

  1. I really loved this movie when I saw it and still do, though I can’t argue with the critiques against it, but they don’t take away from enjoyment. I LOVE Baron Munchausen, which was a series of disjointed stories to start with so the random nature of the movie is endearing to me and the figure of death is one of the best ever. I am in general a fan of Gilliam’s work and how he mixes fantasy and reality with no clear boundaries at times. It’s not often a light watch but I appreciate that. Brazil is a light romp compared to say… Tideland. OMG. I thinks its a work of art but to recommend it would be putting someone through something really, really difficult to deal with for years after seeing it

  2. Gilliam does seem to be difficult to watch, especially as time goes on. I remembered liking “Fisher King,” but then didn’t want to watch it for like 20 years. When I did, I’d forgotten how depressing it is, and that’s his most mainstream! As Max asked, I don’t know that I LIKED “Baron Munchausen,” but I think I’m still glad he made it. More power to him, but I probably won’t be along for the ride. Thanks, Vince!

  3. Surprise cameo? John Travolta in Hairspray. I liked this movie when I saw it at twelve years old, (roughly) but I think about it more than most movies I’ve seen, so I think it’s doing something right, even if it’s not flawless.

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