the history of time travel movie

The History of Time Travel: A Sci Fi Movie on Amazon Prime

history of science fiction

Every once in a while, you come across that one movie that really stick out, whether it’s a super unique concept or just an off-the-wall sort of film.

I recently found a sci fi movie on Amazon Prime that presents itself as a documentary, when it’s actually a sci fi concept film. The History of Time Travel is filmed like a classic documentary but it’s anything but that, and it’s certainly not a Doctor Who film, either.

Here’s a complete review of The History of Time Travel .

Some History

The History of Time Travel was an Austin Film Festival movie in 2014, but it had been in various stages of production since 2010.

The writer and director, Rick Kennedy, has worked on a few other films, most of which you’ve probably never heard of. A Year from Now is a Christmas Carol meets Groundhog Day film, and his first film, The Line, is about a prisoner escaping from Nazi Germany.

Of his work, The History of Time Travel stands out as a unique entity, mainly because the idea of filming an obviously fictional story as a documentary is particularly boggling.

In an interview with the Austin Film Festival , Kennedy says that some people “might enjoy the sci-fi elements more, or find the alternate histories interesting, or appreciate the humor and the absurdity of the whole thing,” and I certainly think he’s hit the nail on the head there.

The Premise

So, as you’ve probably guessed, The History of Time Travel is a fake documentary. It employs the classic documentary narrator to make ominous comments, and all of the “experts” and first-hand accounts seem to be on the same page about the story.

And the story revolves around Edward Page and his family. Page was an MIT graduate in the late 1930s and later became a researcher for the Indiana Project, a clandestine project funded by the Pentagon to create time travel.

The Indiana Project and the Manhattan Project ran parallel for many years, but after WWII ended with the atomic bomb, the Pentagon began to cut funding to time travel research.

At some point, someone designs a portable time machine. And I say someone because as the film goes on, it becomes unclear who invented the machine. Originally, it was Edward’s son, Richard, but as Richard goes back in time to fix his family, the timelines start to get jumbled.

Just know that there is a time machine, and it does work, and you’ll know. The history gradually starts to change as the film goes on. Even though Richard only intended to change one or two aspects of the world when he went back in time, he ended up changing the whole trajectory of American history.

Nixon is assassinated in Dallas instead of JFK, Russians land on the moon first—the list goes on.

Eventually, we reach a point where the rabid flurry of timelines convene, and the world returns to normal. Not to the normal of the first half of the film, but to our normal. The History of Time Travel becomes The Theory of Time Travel , and it’s on the Science Fiction Channel instead of the History Channel.

The Verdict

At first, the scripted nature of the movie made it feel very stiff and unrealistic. Sure, they had the conventions of a documentary, but everything seemed to line up too easily, and that’s how you knew it was scripted.

The experts—which included a sci fi author, a philosopher, and a few time-travel physicists and historians—all had a similar way of storytelling, which made it evident they were reading a script. Instead of acting as individual characters, they were simply voice actors reading lines.

the history of time travel movie

They spent a lot of time in the first minutes of the movie discussing the family life of Edward Page, in pretty vivid detail. I didn’t quite understand why until the movie started to branch off into different timelines, and we literally saw our history change before our eyes.

I think that the film is bold and interesting. It takes the medium of the documentary and turns it into a sci-fi concept film, and that’s something I would have never paired together. It gives me the vibe of the Ancient Aliens TV show and other similar conspiracy-theory documentaries, but with a more creative flair.

The History of Time Travel had a fairly small budget, but the production value was pretty good. There were a few points where I giggled at the poorly Photoshopped “evidence”, but I think that only contributed to the humor.

Overall, I’d give the film a 7/10. It had an original concept, and even though it stumbled through the first twenty minutes, it ended with a potent question about time travel: “Would we even notice if it happened?”

Is it the best sci fi movie on Amazon Prime right now? Not by a long shot, but it’s certainly worth watching if you’re tired of all the lasers, spaceships, and aliens that populate mainstream sci fi film.


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A fictional documentary about the creation of the world's first time machine, the men who created it, and the unintended ramifications it has on world events.

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Edward Page (Younger) / Aden Page

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The History of Time Travel

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The history of time travel.

2014 Directed by Ricky Kennedy

Would We Even Notice?

A fictional documentary about the creation of the world's first time machine, the men who created it, and the unintended ramifications it has on world events.

Stephen Adami Krista Ales Valerie Black Ryan Blackburn Garland Buffalo Peter J. Calvin Cater Cartwright Trey Cartwright Ben Everett Christopher Fenley Tim Hogle Justin Lee Hughes Ricky Kennedy Noah Larive Elizabeth Lestina Brad Maule Daniel W. May Dudley May Roy May Herbert Midgley Hannah Patton Peyton Paulette David Raine Fazia Rizvi Jody Ryan Micah Scott Bill Small Michael Tubbs

Director Director

Ricky Kennedy

Executive Producers Exec. Producers

William Arscott Susan Kennedy Terry Kennedy

Writer Writer

Editor editor, cinematography cinematography.

Justin Herring

Production Design Production Design

Nancy Andrew

Art Direction Art Direction

Alexander Karkosh Victoria Stone

Composer Composer

Herbert Midgley

Pineywood Pictures

Science Fiction Drama

Monsters, aliens, sci-fi and the apocalypse Crude humor and satire Imaginative space odysseys and alien encounters Action-packed space and alien sagas Thought-provoking sci-fi action and future technology Dangerous technology and the apocalypse Action comedy and silly heroics Show All…

Releases by Date

Theatrical limited, 25 oct 2014, releases by country.

  • Theatrical limited NR Austin Film Festival

72 mins   More at IMDb TMDb Report this page

Popular reviews

Mondo Cinema

Review by Mondo Cinema ★★★★ 3

This starts out slow and kind of dull, you may begin to ask yourself "What is this shit?" Trust me give it about fifteen minutes, the sheer genius of this will become apparent. This is how you make something great with little money.

Mondo Cinema out...

Jason Pettus

Review by Jason Pettus ★★★★★ 2

2019 movie viewings, #82. This highly enjoyable no-budget sci-fi movie uses an extremely clever premise to derive virtually all of its fun. It's supposedly a documentary set several hundred years from now about the invention of a time machine in the early 21st century; but every time the talking heads divulge one more moment of this alt-history timeline, the details of each of the talking heads' environments change (different newspaper headlines in the background of a museum box, different styles of clothes, etc), to essentially let us know that the entire future has changed butterfly-style effect every time one of these events is mentioned, with the timeline being discussed by the historians shifting from one moment to the next depending…


Review by DreamScape40 ★★★½

Intrigued concept


Review by CGS ★★★★

Way to wring a lot of creativity out of a tiny budget. Despite some unconvincing line readings, I was able to just go with it and ended up really enjoying this. Hope the director gets the chance to work with a bigger budget some day.


Review by mrbalihai ★★★★

I tend to view time travel in film as a lazy cop-out by unimaginative screenwriters...a tacit admission that they couldn't come up with a creative way to resolve a complex plot. I can think of a couple of exceptions, most notably "12 Monkeys," where the vagaries of time travel and paradoxes form the core of the film and take a creative and interesting look at how it could potentially affect both history and the time-travelers themselves, but by-and-large, time travel serves simply as an often-ludicrous Deus ex Machina .

"The History of Time Travel" falls into the former category. It's a supremely clever examination of how altering history might impact future events, and how humanity would (or wouldn't) notice those changes.…


Review by gavin ★★★★ 2


GENIUS! GENIUS premise. thirty minutes in once I realized what this film was all about I had to pause and laugh with joy. how often does a film fill you with that much excitement that you have to pause to take a moment to appreciate how fun it is

We Love Movies!!! 🎬

Review by We Love Movies!!! 🎬 ★★★★

I only wish Christopher Nolan could explain time travel as well as this does.

A History of Time Travel is a very clever , fictional documentary about the creation of the worlds first time machine, the men who created it, and the unintended ramifications it has on world events.

It takes a few minute to get into this film . or should I say adjust to it .  It’s telling a fiction story about a family who invent a time machine but because they try to go back and change time the fictional documentary changes with it.   The changes are very subtle.  It might be the posters on the walls , badges of their lapels or the colour the countries…

Adam Zell

Review by Adam Zell ★★★★★

that moment in the movie… it’s amazing

Tim McClelland

Review by Tim McClelland ★★★½

An imaginative and wonderfully constructed faux documentary that was really well done. It plays out pretty normal for the first half-hour, but then it begins to take some intriguing twists and turns with little more than a few small changes. A very unique film that is worth checking out for any fans of time travel films.

Whit Ripley

Review by Whit Ripley ★★★★

This film is damn clever! Needs multiple re-watches to catch everything, I love how subtle it is.

Seen at the 2016 Phoenix Film Festival


Review by hendo ★★★★½

WHAT THE FUCK (better than Primer)

erik reeds

Review by erik reeds ★★★½

this was fun! wish more nerd media was like this, something earnest and interesting and not, you know, guys being weird dudes or what have you

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the history of time travel movie

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Film / The History of Time Travel

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The History of Time Travel is a 2014 sci-fi docu-fiction movie written and directed by up-and-coming film student Ricky Kennedy about the history behind the invention of time travel as framed as a network TV documentary on the subject.

The movie's plot involves an Alternate Timeline where a letter by Albert Einstein to President Franklin D. Roosevelt, warning FDR of the potential Nazi time travel program and urging him to start one as well, resulting in the creation of the Indiana Project with the express purpose of creating time travel before Those Wacky Nazis can. It chronicles the life of Edward Page, a scientist working on the Indiana Project and his son Richard who continues his work after his death and the process which resulted in the creation of the time machine and the younger Page's attempt to save his mother from dying from Polio when he was a child.

This film provides examples of:

  • Alternate History : The film begins in an alternate history where the Nazis begin experimenting in creating a time machine, inspiring a US government research project into time travel called the Indiana Project. Resulting in Richard Page's success in creating a time machine in the 1980s. Which in turn results in several more alternate timelines as Page alters history.
  • Bland-Name Product : "You're watching History Television "
  • Dramatic Irony : In one of the altered timelines where the Soviets use a stolen time machine to handily win the Cold War, one of the interviewees comments that time travel must be the only explanation for how the Soviets were able to get Sputnik into orbit before anything American-made, despite the fact that in actual history, Sputnik was the first unmanned space satellite, without the aid of time travel. Of course, the interviewees don't know this due to not having Ripple-Effect-Proof Memory , as detailed below.
  • Foreshadowing : The Soviets winning the Cold War is foreshadowed by a globe in the background of an interview altering as the film goes on to have more and more nations shaded in red, implying that each successive alteration of the timeline resulted in the USSR-aligned bloc getting bigger and bigger .
  • Mockumentary : The film is presented as an in-universe history documentary about the events and people surrounding the creation of time travel.
  • Giving Radio to the Romans : Richard attempts to help his father expedite his research in the 1940s by leaving him a prototype and all necessary notes. Unfortunately part of Edward's inability to make a breakthrough was that 1940s technology wasn't sufficiently advanced for his needs and Edward is unable to recreate his success after the KGB steals the prototype and destroys the Indiana Project facilities.
  • He Knows Too Much : Edward Page is tailed by the CIA and KGB in one timeline because of his knowledge of time travel; both he and his wife are eliminated when Edward attempts to use facilities at MIT to replicate his 1940s work with the Indiana Project .
  • Despite the Soviets using time-travel to gain an advantage over the United States at every stage of the Cold War in one Alternate Timeline , history broadly follows the same pattern - a US President is assasinated in 1963 (though it's Nixon rather than Kennedy), the first man walks on the moon in 1969 (though it's Yuri Gagarin rather than Neil Armstrong) etc.
  • Kid from the Future : In one timeline, Edward encounters his two time-traveling adult sons from the future, who give him the completed time machine and their time-travel research. Decades later, when he tells their younger alternate selves about this encounter, they initially refuse to believe him and take it as a sign of his deteriorating mental health.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero : Richard and Aden attempt to alter history by giving their father their completed time machine and the research used to build it during WWII in an attempt to alter their family history after their mother kills herself. The end result is KGB infiltrators stealing the prototype and the research papers, destroying the Indiana Project to prevent the Americans from building another one and then the Soviets use the time machine to effectively win the Cold War, the implication being that in the altered 2014, the USA is one of the few if not the last remaining capitalist nation on Earth .
  • No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup : Averted completely. Edward Page's hidden research notes allow Richard to build a working time machine in two different timelines. Ultimately invoked in the end when Richard makes one last trip to the past to completely destroy the Indiana Project, break his father's obsession with time travel research in order to save his family, and deny success to the KGB agents who had infiltrated the project .
  • Our Presidents Are Different : at least from 1960 onwards in one timeline, with Nixon beating Kennedy and then subsequently being assassinated, with the implication that the Soviets orchestrated the assassination. A segment taking place in 2014 has the picture on the wall switch from Barack Obama to Hillary Clinton repeatedly.
  • Reset Button Ending : The film ends with history being altered by the Page Brothers so that time travel was never invented, the Page family earns their (mostly) happy ending and the documentary goes from being a history documentary to a sci-fi documentary where the stillborn Indiana Project is mentioned as a point where time travel could've been invented in real life but wasn't .
  • Ret-Gone : In his attempts to save his mother's life through time travel, Richard manages to unwittingly pull this on one of the people currently being interviewed about the story. After preventing his mother from dying in a car crash, a newspaper reveals that the crash instead claimed the lives of a couple with the same last name as an older man being interviewed in the present, who we can presume are his parents. The next time that interview location is shown, the man has been completely replaced by a younger woman, who remains there until the end of the movie where the time-travel machine prototype in the 40's is destroyed, thus preventing the story from ever happening in the first place, at which point the man returns.
  • Ripple Effect Indicator : This film itself is intended to be one for the audience , with the "History of Time-Travel" that the interviewers are discussing changing throughout the course of the film every time a time-traveler changes history, with none of the characters in-universe being any wiser. Word of God describes this film as being analogous to Marty McFly's photograph in Back to the Future .
  • Ripple-Effect-Proof Memory : Averted. Changing the past results in the time traveler lapsing into a 3-day coma upon returning to the present, from which they emerge with their memories altered to match the new timeline and only vague recollections of the old one. It's taken up to eleven when the whole documentary crew and all the interviewed talking heads likewise lose all memories of the original timeline and treat the new one as if it was always the history they knew mid-movie, with their clothes, hairstyles and interview locations changing as well (in one case, the interviewee changes completely from an older man to a younger woman) and the same title cards appearing multiple times as different versions of the same events are recapped and discussed .
  • Set Right What Once Went Wrong : The whole movie chronicles successive attempts to do this beginning with Richard Page attempting to save his mom from dying from Polio when he was young and ending with his cosmic retconed-in brother traveling back to destroy the Indiana Project in order to prevent time travel from ever being invented .
  • also, Richard remains in a coma that Aiden expects him to wake from.
  • Spoiler Cover : The ads for the film show an astronaut planting a soviet flag on the moon. When you watch it, you know it's gonna happen.
  • Stupid Jetpack Hitler : The in-universe justification for the creation of the Indiana Project, create time travel before the Nazis can. Which leads to Soviet Superscience when KGB agents infiltrate the Indiana Project and steal the prototype time machine, allowing the Soviet Union to beat the US to the Moon, stay one step (or more) ahead of every advance in US military technology, and change the geopolitical picture for the remainder of the 20th century completely.
  • Temporal Sickness : Time-travelers who return to the present after successfully changing the past suffer a form of this - inexplicably slipping into a coma, and reawakening with no memory of the original timeline or what they've done. In the final timeline, Richard never recovers from his coma.
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the history of time travel movie

the history of time travel movie

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the history of time travel movie

the history of time travel movie

The History of Time Travel

the history of time travel movie

  • Eddie Harrison ...the budget isn't there for a big pay-off, but if you can handle your sci-fi in the form of pure ideas... has some mind-blowing twists and turns to enjoy

Take Plex everywhere

A Brief History of Time Travel (in Movies)

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From Men In Black III to Back to the Future to Planet of the Apes , films that voyage through the ages face internal consistency problems—and tap into the human desire to change fate.

[optional image description]

If ever a movie earned its time-travel plotline, it's Men in Black 3 , which attempts to revive a movie franchise largely forgotten by audiences after its disappointing second entry. Men in Black 3 sees Will Smith's Agent J going back to the 1960s to save partner Agent K (Tommy Lee Jones in the present, Josh Brolin in the past), and mines its late-'60s setting for jokes both obvious (hippies, Andy Warhol) and subtle (Rick Baker's new alien designs, which are derived from the style of '60s science fiction).

But if time travel, as the Men in Black would have it, is "illegal throughout the universe," cinema is full of lawbreakers. It's been 10 years since the last Men in Black movie, but nearly 100 years since the first time-travel film hit movie theaters. There are so many variations on turning the clock forwards and backwards in cinema that it's difficult to say these films even belong to a unified "genre." But every time-traveling movie has, in its own way, had to overcome the mind-bending logic problems inherent in its premise. And each, too, has played on a universal, if vain, human desire to experience a world that's entirely unavailable to us—and perhaps to change things in our own.

Though most would cite H.G. Wells's 1895 novel The Time Machine as the progenitor of the modern time-travel story, the author wrote an even earlier one, "The Chronic Argonauts," in 1888. Sandwiched between Wells's two time-machine stories was the other founding text of the genre: Mark Twain's 1889 satire A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court . Unlike Wells, who always put at least a cursory effort into the science of his science fiction, Twain was more interested in what a time traveler would do than in how he got there; his Connecticut Yankee awakens in Camelot times after being knocked out by a crowbar.

It took a long time for the time-travel film to escape Wells and Twain's sci-fi shadows. The first three notable entries in the genre were adaptations of A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court : a 1921 silent, a 1931 talkie, and a 1949 musical. George Pal's classic 1960 adaptation of The Time Machine was the first time-travel film to win an Oscar (for best visual effects). But despite these successes, time travel remained on the fringes of popular culture, only appearing as a plot device in adaptations like Planet of the Apes and Slaughterhouse-Five , or the occasional B-movie like The Time Travelers or Journey to the Center of Time .

Story continues below

The fact that it took so long for a non-adapted time-travel story to become a mainstream hit is a testament to how difficult films like these are to write. Every time-travel tale needs to establish its own internally consistent set of rules, and hardcore genre fans—a notoriously pedantic bunch—will tear apart any story that fails to do so. (It's not for nothing that the Wikipedia page on "Predestination paradoxes in popular culture" alone is over 21,000 words long.) It wasn't until the early 1980s that filmmakers like James Cameron ( The Terminator ), and Robert Zemeckis ( Back to the Future ) discovered an ingenious solution to the near-impossibility of writing a sensical time-travel story: Write a time travel story that's so much fun mainstream audiences won't care about consistency.


the history of time travel movie

Despite the considerable differences in their plotlines and executions, Cameron and Zemeckis's back-to-back time-travel films were massive hits, spawning franchises that are unquestionably the genre's best. They succeeded, in part, because they found the balance between science—enough, in fact, to keep diehard genre fans working out its logic for decades—and story. And once the time travel genre was unwedded from its prickly reputation, Hollywood began to apply it to every kind of movie imaginable. It would be impossible to name all the notable time-traveling films released over the past century (though I've done my best in the slideshow above), but the years following The Terminator and Back to the Future saw everything from time-travel dramedys ( Peggy Sue Got Married ) to time-travel horror films ( Warlock ), time-travel romcoms ( Kate & Leopold ) to time-travel stoner films (The Bill & Ted films). Last year, Woody Allen's decade-hopping Midnight in Paris earned a nomination for Best Picture—the first in the genre to do so.

It's easy to see why these movies endure. Who hasn't day dreamed about knowing what's to come or going back and changing what's happened? By visiting the past, you learn where you came from; by visiting the future, you learn where you're going—and even if you return to the time you came from, your experiences have changed you. In the end, that's the real magic of the time-travel genre and the reason it's such a reliable box-office draw. All movies promise to take you away from your normal life and show you something new, but no genre does it quite so literally—or so well.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to [email protected].

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The 25 Greatest Time-Travel Movies Ever Made

the history of time travel movie

It must say something, surely, about humans, how often time-travel movies are about returning to the past rather than jumping to the future. As Mark Duplass’s forlorn character says in Safety Not Guaranteed , “The mission has to do with regret.” With all the potential to explore the unknown world of the future, so often when our minds conspire to bend the rules of time it’s instead to rehash the old. It’s compelling to watch a character in a movie do what we cannot — right past wrongs or uncover the reason for or meaning behind the events in their lives, whether they be emotionally catastrophic or merely geopolitically motivated.

So absent is the future from the canon, in fact, that when it is involved, typically future dwellers are leaving their own time to come back to the present. Back to the Future Part II aside, it seems as if there’s something about going forward in time that just doesn’t track for humans. (Of course, you could argue that this is because the present-day concept of bidirectional time travel would infinitely multiply or change beyond recognition any future that may occur, but that’s a knot for another article.)

In any case, the time-travel stories deemed worthy of Hollywood budgets aren’t always straightforward in their mechanics. Some films on this list barely qualify as time-travel movies at all; others could hardly qualify as anything else. There are movies about trips through time but also ones about the bending and fracturing and muddying thereof; then there are those about, as Andy Samberg aptly puts it in Palm Springs , “one of those infinite time-loop situations you might have heard about.” There’s even a movie in which we get only 13 seconds’ worth of time travel, when it functions more like a joke whose punch line hits at the film’s climax.

What these films all do have in common is a fascination with changing the way time works. That being said, the list leaves out movies in larger, more extended franchises in which time meddling is a one-off dalliance thrown into a sequel with little by way of foreshadowing: think Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban , Avengers: Endgame , and Men in Black III . (It also leaves off perhaps the Ur-time-travel movie, Primer , and the quite good Midnight in Paris because their directors don’t deserve the column inches.) We’re looking at self-contained stories using time mechanics from the start, with preference given to those that involve themselves more intently with the ins and outs of time travel; that ask questions about time, aging, memory and so forth; and that try to succeed at it in new and interesting ways. So let’s get to it.

25. Galaxy Quest (1999)

Does Galaxy Quest really count as a time-travel movie? Some compelling reasons argue that it doesn’t: Time travel isn’t a major factor in the plot, and the time traveling that does occur is, yes, only a 13-second jump. But its use of time travel is meaningful insofar as the movie itself is a loving spoof of Star Trek , which makes use of time travel in three films ( one of which made this list ), not to mention dozens of episodes across its various TV iterations. Tacking on time travel as a deus ex machina for the actors in a Star Trek– like show pressed into service as an actual space crew by an endangered alien race is the exact right amount of ribbing in a movie that’s as on point as it is hilarious.

Galaxy Quest is available to rent on Amazon .

24. Happy Death Day (2017)

Pick away at the surface of a time-loop movie and you find a horror movie. Most of the entries on this list are covered in enough feel-good spin to land as comedies, but Happy Death Day stares the horror of the time-loop phenomenon right in the face. (It’s also quite funny.) Reliving the same day over and over is an unimaginably potent form of psychological torture, and adding murder to the equation does little to dull that edge. The film follows a college-age protagonist struggling to escape from a masked slasher hell-bent on killing her again and again while she tries to solve the mystery of how she got stuck in a time loop.

Happy Death Day is available to rent on Amazon .

23. Back to the Future Part II (1989)

Seriously, this may be the only good movie in which the film’s whole focus is using a time machine to travel into the future. The fact that it’s a sequel is telling — the characters already traveled into the past in the first movie , and the filmmakers decided to save “traveling even further into the past“ for the third film in the trilogy. Still, Back to the Future Part II is a fun time that makes great use of sight gags and references, recasting scenes from the first film in the distant future year of 2015 with all its hoverboards and self-lacing Nikes.

Back to the Future Part II is available to rent on Amazon .

22. See You Yesterday (2019)

It’s a dirty little secret of time-travel movies that they tend to be, well, pretty white. Tenet ’s Protagonist aside, if Hollywood’s sending someone through time, they’re almost certainly not a Black person, and for obvious reasons: Most of post-contact North American history is deeply unfriendly to people of color, and the problems a person running around out of time and place is going to encounter are deeply compounded if they’ll likely be the target of racist abuse or violence — which makes See You Yesterday all the more compelling. Produced by Spike Lee and featuring one of filmdom’s most famous time travelers in a cameo role, it follows a Black teenage science prodigy who uses a time machine to try to save her brother from being killed by a police officer.

See You Yesterday is streaming on Netflix .

21. Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989)

No offense to the Back to the Future franchise, but time travel never looks more fun on film than it does in the first Bill & Ted movie. It’s a concept that feels distinctly of a different era, so pure is its zaniness, that it’s hard to imagine anyone concocting it today. The titular duo, Californian high-school students in the ’80s, travel through the past looking for historical figures in order to ace a history project, then bring them all back to the present. High jinks ensue! We get Genghis Khan in a sporting-goods store and Mozart on an electric keyboard. What more could you want?

Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure is streaming on HBO Max .

20. Source Code (2011)

Time-travel-film aficionados know this won’t be Jake Gyllenhaal’s only stop on this list, but no matter. Source Code finds him repeating the same eight minutes over and over as he struggles to find the culprit in a train bombing — with each replay ending in his own death by explosion. For some reason, a romantic subplot is shoehorned into this, along with a bunch of frankly unnecessary technical mumbo-jumbo, but the core idea is a compelling mix of the time-loop movie and the train whodunit that Gyllenhaal is a perfect fit for.

Source Code is available to rent on Amazon .

19. 12 Monkeys (1995)

Some sort of law of nature dictates that every genuinely good idea and/or piece of true art has to at some point be turned into a Hollywood movie. Thank God La Jetée was adapted into something that can stand on its own feet artistically. 12 Monkeys may not retain its source material’s black-and-white look or stripped-down, static-image presentation, but it is a rollicking good time nonetheless. That’s in no small part due to director Terry Gilliam getting the best out of Bruce Willis and a young Brad Pitt, and recasting World War III as a planet-decimating virus. Which, like at least one other movie on this list , “speaks to the present moment,” or whatever.

12 Monkeys is available to rent on Amazon .

18. Run Lola Run (1998)

Unlike almost all of the other films on this list, the terms time travel and time machine don’t show up anywhere in Run Lola Run . Rather, it’s a sort of de facto time-loop scenario in which the protagonist tries repeatedly to pay a ransom to save her boyfriend’s life. In fact, if not for a few key details, it could easily be characterized (and often has been) as an alternate-endings movie rather than a time-travel film. But the fact that Lola seems to be learning from her past attempts with each successive one suggests that she is, indeed, using knowledge gained from previous loops to bring a satisfactory end to this situation.

Run Lola Run is available to rent on Amazon .

17. Edge of Tomorrow (2014)

One of the most striking things about Groundhog Day is the mutability and replicability of its core conceit. Perhaps the best case in point is Edge of Tomorrow , sometimes known as Live. Die. Repeat. after its original tagline. It’s the kind of physically grueling movie only an actor as genuinely unhinged as Tom Cruise could pull off. A noncombatant thrust into a war against invading aliens, Cruise’s character finds himself reliving day one of combat over and over, slowly but surely refining his techniques in order to survive the extraterrestrial onslaught. Like the central twosome in the much less violent Palm Springs , he winds up with a partner in (war) crime, teaming up with the similarly time-trapped Emily Blunt, and the explanation for the replay glitch here is actually pretty satisfying.

Edge of Tomorrow is streaming on Fubo TV .

16. Star Trek (2009)

If you could create some sort of an advanced stat to measure controversy generated per unit of interesting filmmaking decisions, J.J. Abrams would have to be near the top in terms of his ability to rig up movie drama from almost nothing. This is a guy whose filmography is like Godzilla rip-off, Spielberg homage, safe reboot of cherished IP, repeat. Star Trek may be his best film, though, a sure-footed reinvention of a dorky sci-fi franchise that made it, well, cool. Somehow, the beauty of Spock and Kirk’s bromance being woven through chance encounters with future selves kind of … works?

Star Trek is available to rent on Amazon .

15. The Girl Who Leapt Through Time (2006)

There’s a relative dearth of time travel in animated film, which perhaps is a function simply of the fact that it’s less impressive to stage in a world that’s already unreal. If you can Looney Tunes your way through physics, what’s so special about grabbing the flow of time and tying it into a bow? Still, the original Girl Who Leapt Through Time deserves mention here. It’s a beautiful story that interlaces the complexity of time leaping with the intensity of teenage emotion and the thorny process of growing up where the opportunity to redo things leads, over time, to growth — a less shitty Groundhog Day , in a way.

The Girl Who Leapt Through Time is available to rent on Amazon .

14. Safety Not Guaranteed (2012)

She may not be the most famous, decorated, or emulated actress of her generation, but Aubrey Plaza is someone whose personality spoke to the irony-soaked 2010s in a way that simply could not be denied. Her character on Parks and Recreation , April Ludgate, was, by all accounts, created specifically to channel Plaza’s real-life personality to the screen, and she plays essentially the same character in Safety Not Guaranteed . Here, she’s a sarcastic intern at a magazine working on a story about a would-be time traveler and using her feminine wiles to slowly gain his trust. The chemistry between Plaza and Mark Duplass is probably the film’s high point; the subplot about the FBI feels like it was clipped out of a bad X-Files episode.

Safety Not Guaranteed is streaming on Tubi .

13. La Jetée (1962)

At only a 28-minute run time, La Jetée is arguably too short to merit inclusion on this list. However, what it lacks in content (and in, well, moving images; it’s almost exclusively a collection of static black-and-white shots set to voice-over), it more than makes up for in inventiveness and influence, and it would be a travesty to leave it out in favor of more recent by-the-book fare. Tracing the tale of a man held prisoner in post-WWIII Paris being used in time-travel experiments as his captors seek to remedy the postapocalyptic state of the world, he’s sent into both the future and the past and ends up unraveling a lifelong personal mystery while he’s at it.

La Jetée is streaming on the Criterion Channel .

12. Planet of the Apes (1968)

Unlike the worse but more straightforwardly time-traveling Tim Burton remake, the relationship between the original Planet of the Apes and time travel is inexact — technically, the astronaut crew that lands on the titular planet does travel forward 2,000 years, but it’s not done via a time machine. The travel isn’t instantaneous: It literally does take them 2,000 years to get there; they’re just unconscious and on life support. Still, the way the film’s ending handles the iconic reveal is exactly in line with the best of the time-travel canon, the telescoping, mise en abyme feeling of the world shifting in front of your very eyes without your moving an inch.

Planet of the Apes is available to rent on Amazon .

11. Groundhog Day (1993)

The famous Bill Murray vehicle essentially invented the infinite-time-loop genre (and it’s hardly a movie that succeeds on the strength of its concept alone), but the idea at its core is so steeped in the casual misogyny of late-’80s and early-’90s cinema that it’s hard to watch today without cringing. Murray’s character employing what amounts to PUA-style techniques over and over and over in a desperate bid to fuck his hapless co-worker just doesn’t hit the way it did back then. If the story arc didn’t present a guy detoxifying himself of the worst aspects of masculinity in order to be worthy of a woman’s love as the primary way for a 20th-century white man to achieve full personhood, this would be much higher on the list.

Groundhog Day is streaming on Starz .

10. Predestination (2014)

This is probably the most complicated film on the list. Following a “temporal agent” (played by Ethan Hawke) who’s trying to prevent a bombing in 1970s New York, it’s based on a Robert A. Heinlein short story and features Shiv Roy herself, Sarah Snook, in a star-making turn as someone with a complicated backstory and a secret. Like the best sci-fi, the film’s premise raises all kinds of fascinating questions about the titular concept and throws in some interesting musings on sex, gender, and the self in the process.

Predestination is streaming on Tubi .

9. Looper (2012)

Wes Anderson gets a lot of flak for his overwrought twee visuals, but Rian Johnson has a knack for making movies that feel and function like dioramas even if they don’t look it. Narratively speaking, everything here is constructed just so — and there’s a certain beauty in that — but who ever had a profound experience of art by looking at a diorama? Looper was probably Johnson’s least precious pre– Star Wars film, which is nice because the temptation to drastically overmaneuver the mechanics of a time-travel story can lead to disaster. The tech used to Bruce Willis–ify Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s face is distracting, and the third act’s retreat from the postapocalyptic city of the future to the postapocalyptic corn farm of the future is a brave choice that the film struggles to land. Still, Johnson’s vision of a future in which organized crime runs time travel is compelling and well worth a watch.

Looper is streaming on Netflix .

8. Donnie Darko (2001)

Donnie Darko is a bit of a genre mash-up. Part high-school movie, part sci-fi flick, part bleak meditation on the soullessness of late-’80s America, it’s nevertheless a weirdly successful piece of filmmaking that makes fantastic use of a young Jake Gyllenhaal, a great supporting cast (Maggie Gyllenhaal, Drew Barrymore, Jena Malone, and Patrick Swayze among others), and an absolutely iconic haunting cover of Tears for Fears’ “Mad World.” Watching high schoolers navigate parallel universes, wormholes, and time travel is a dicey proposition, but director Richard Kelly makes it work, somehow.

Donnie Darko is streaming on HBO Max .

7. Back to the Future (1984)

While it’s clearly superior to the sequel (and leagues ahead of the final film in the trilogy), the original Back to the Future is a bit of a mess (John Mulaney was right , to be honest). Its racial and gender politics are cringey, and the incest subplot is weird (“It’s your cousin Marvin. Marvin Pornhub . You know that new plot element you’ve been looking for?”), but there’s a clear interest in time travel beyond its shimmering surface: the very real addressing of the “grandfather problem” in time travel via the slow disappearance of Marty from his family photo, the accidental invention of rock music, and a genuine curiosity about the nuts-and-bolts mechanics of time machines. Ahh, what the hell. It’s a romp.

Back to the Future is available to rent on Amazon .

6. Palm Springs (2020)

No offense to Gen-Xers and boomers, but the best time-loop movie of all time is Palm Springs . The film isn’t without its missteps, but it’s much more curious about life than Groundhog Day was through the eyes of Murray’s misanthrope. Cristin Milioti and Andy Samberg‘s characters, stuck in the loop together, are a perfect comedic match, and their shared humanity makes for a beautiful arc. The film raises questions about what’s worth doing in life when nothing lasts and how to stay sane when every day is the same. Of course, as a sort of polar opposite of Tenet , it benefited from coming out during the pandemic by speaking, as it does, to the experience of lockdown.

Palm Springs is streaming on Hulu .

5. Tenet (2020)

Interstellar wasn’t enough for Chris Nolan, apparently. Tenet ’s legacy may end up being little more than that of the COVID action movie no one saw — a bloated thriller that Nolan fought to get into theaters and bar from home viewing reportedly to swell the size of his own pockets. It really did suffer from bad timing, though, because this is genuinely a quintessential big-screen popcorn movie whose absurdity is all the more palatable when it’s given the audiovisual bombast it deserves. Ambitious in scope as it traces a war on the past by the future (yes, you read that right), Tenet is as enamored of action tropes as it is in bucking them, and its investment in rendering visible the brain-bendingly knotty mechanics of moving through time is laudable, even when the movie itself remains opaque — as impenetrable as the future, as hazy as the past.

Tenet is streaming on HBO Max .

4. The Terminator (1984)

A partner to Blade Runner in the mid-’80s invention of sci-fi noir, The Terminator is a stunning film in many ways, despite the third act’s now-iffy visual effects. While it’s not James Cameron’s debut, and it would go on to be bested by its sequel , it functions as an incredible showcase for an emerging young director who would exclusively make big stories for the rest of his career. Arnold Schwarzenegger is perfectly cast as the relentless, unemotional killer cyborg sent back from the future to terminate the mother of the eventual resistance leader, and the film’s romantic subplot has just the perfect amount of time-travel-induced cheesiness for it to work.

The Terminator is streaming on Amazon Prime Video .

3. Interstellar (2014)

It’s not inaccurate to say Christopher Nolan is a director who’s more interested in scale and scope than in expressing the minutiae of the human experience in its purest form. But in Interstellar, a Nolan movie in its titular ambitions, there’s a core element of time travel wrought not as sci-fi fireworks but as a paean to the sheer force and will of the power of love. It both does and doesn’t work, depending on your capacity for cheese in space, but even besides that, Nolan’s use of time as story arc — the way Miller’s planet functions, in particular — is conceptually masterful in the best kind of time-travel-movie way.

Interstellar is streaming on Paramount+ .

2. Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)

Whereas the franchise’s first movie spends more time on the question of time travel, in the second it takes a bit of a back seat to the action itself. It’s hard to fault director James Cameron for this decision; T2 remains one of the best action movies of the ’90s and — along with Jurassic Park and The Matrix — one of the decade’s best when for special effects. The groundbreaking T-1000 would honestly be enough to get this movie on the list; a tween John Connor grappling with questions of predestination and the fact that he is vicariously responsible for his own conception feel almost like icing on the time-travel cake. Much as in 12 Monkeys , time travel here is mistaken for delusion, as valiant Sarah Connor, in a Cassandra-esque nightmare, has to battle against the future only she knows is coming. Of course, Cassandra never had access to any firepower stored in underground desert arsenals.

Terminator 2: Judgment Day is streaming on Netflix .

1. Arrival (2016)

It’s fair to wonder whether Arrival really is, in fact, a time-travel movie. The Ted Chiang short story it’s based on isn’t about time travel per se; rather, it’s an exploration of alternate forms of temporal understanding. The linguist protagonist, played by Amy Adams, doesn’t travel through time so much as come to experience it differently. Still, the plot ends up hinging on foreknowledge that she is granted not via visions but by actually experiencing her future simultaneously with her present and past. For our purposes, though, that’s time fuckery enough to merit inclusion, and boy howdy does the film deliver in overall quality. Partly, that’s simply a question of the source material. Chiang is arguably the most talented (and possibly the most decorated) American sci-fi writer of his generation. But the source story is not especially Hollywood friendly, and director Denis Villeneuve has adopted it lovingly, borrowing a plot device from another of Chiang’s stories, the more straightforwardly time-travel-based “The Merchant and the Alchemist’s Gate,” in order to add some third-act blockbuster flavor. The result is a beautiful meditation on love, choice, and courage that packs art-film ethos into a genuine sci-fi blockbuster.

Arrival is streaming on Hulu and Paramount+ .

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A Brief History of Time Travel

2019, Documentary, 1h 8m

Where to watch A Brief History of Time Travel

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A brief history of time travel   photos.

How the subject of time travel has evolved in science fiction and mainstream culture since Einstein's theory of relativity more than a century ago.

Genre: Documentary

Original Language: English

Director: Gisella Bustillos

Producer: Gisella Bustillos

Runtime: 1h 8m

Production Co: Majesta Pictures

Cast & Crew

Daniel Wilson

Michelle Power

Gisella Bustillos

Zach Stoltzfus


Roser Segura

Film Editing

Tracie Turnbull

Original Music

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A Brief History of Time Travel

A documentary on the history and pop culture of time travel. featuring interviews with mit professor erik demaine, sci-fi writer daniel wilson, and t.v. show host bill nye., 9/22/2022 12:00:00 am.

Screen Rant

10 best movies about time travel paradoxes.

Time travel movies are as confusing as cinema gets, but when paradoxes enter the stage, it is even easier to get lost in the plot's complexities.

  • Time travel movies often contain paradoxes, creating confusion for viewers. Each film's unique rules and characters' reactions to those paradoxes shape the plot.
  • Different types of paradoxes exist, such as bootstrap, predestination, and temporal paradoxes, which add depth and complexity to time travel movies.
  • Despite the presence of paradoxes, time travel movies can still be entertaining and thought-provoking, providing great storytelling and exploration of love, fate, and the concept of free will.

Time travel can't exist without paradoxes, and neither can science fiction movies about time travel. The way time travel works in each individual film is the first thing a director needs to think through to make sure their movie is consistent and viewers aren't left scratching their heads afterward. Unfortunately, time travel is a tricky subject, and specific rules do not guarantee the absence of paradoxes. The only difference between all time travel movies is that some characters acknowledge the paradox and try to do something about it, and others just ignore its existence and proceed with their goal no matter what.

There are quite a few types of time paradoxes. For instance, a bootstrap paradox is about information or objects that seemingly have no starting point in their timeline; a predestination paradox centers on the cause of someone's time travel being of their own doing in the past; and a temporal paradox revolves around someone's actions in the past that remove the necessity to time travel in the first place. From Interstellar to About Time , time travel movies are riddled with paradoxes , sometimes for the better, providing a great story, and sometimes for the worse, confusing anyone who tries to follow the plot.

RELATED: The One Problem Sci-Fi Time Travel Movies NEVER Resolve

10 Interstellar

Cooper gives himself the idea of contacting murth, interstellar.

Christopher Nolan's movies are largely regarded as sci-fi masterpieces, and Interstellar is no exception. The movie's main mystery, the identity of the ghost, was based on a time paradox. At the beginning of the movie, a book fell out of a shelf on its own, and Interstellar 's surprising ending revealed that it was Cooper who made the book fall out via the Tesseract mechanism to send his past self a message . However, Cooper just did what he'd already seen happen, so the concept raises the question of who originally thought of sending the message in this way. Still, this mind-bending time loop worked against all odds.

9 The Terminator

Kyle reese is john connor's father.

James Cameron's epic sci-fi tale is a classic example of a predestination paradox. In The Terminator , Kyle Reese arrived from the future to stop the Terminator from killing Sarah Connor , the mother of his colleague John. Unknowingly, Kyle ended up fathering John when he developed a romantic relationship with Sarah. If the Terminator hadn't been sent to kill Sarah, and Kyle hadn't followed him, John wouldn't have been born, since his father wouldn't have traveled to the past and met his mother. The Terminator 's paradox ending was controversial, and yet the movie managed to make the story entertaining enough to look past it.

8 The Time Traveler's Wife

Henry & clare meet out of order.

The Time Traveler's Wife explores a beautiful notion that love can transcend any boundaries — apparently, that includes the boundaries of time. The movie didn't pretend to be a serious sci-fi title, but it was essentially based on a paradox, specifically, the incorrect order, in which Henry met Clare. Henry first saw Clare when he time traveled to 1991 , but she already knew him because she had met Henry when she was but a child. That is a confusing concept that raises two questions: when their first meeting took place and how they ended up together at all. The Time Traveler's Wife' s paradoxical love story is endearing nevertheless.

7 The Butterfly Effect

Evan causes his own blackouts, the butterfly effect.

The Butterfly Effect is one of the most mind-blowing time travel movies out there, partly because the rules are very specific, and yet they make no sense whatsoever. The movie featured quite a few time paradoxes, but the biggest one was probably the existence of Evan's blackouts. Young Evan experienced blackouts, caused by his adult self's time travel ; adult Evan had to travel to his past because he knew that he was supposed to cause these blackouts. It is unclear how blackouts appeared in the first place. This plot detail makes The Butterfly Effect 's understanding of time circular rather than linear, but the paradox is still there.

6 About Time

Tim prevents the car crash.

About Time 's central point was Tim going back to the past to prevent the car crash, as this resulted in the erasure of his daughter Posy from existence. Although the film is full of inconsistencies, this event in particular showcases the classic paradox of time travel movies — if the car crash motivated Tim to go back in time to prevent it , then in doing so, he erased the very reason for him to travel to the past. Still, Domhnall Gleeson and accidental time-travel expert Rachel McAdams make up a dynamic duo, and it is impossible not to feel for Tim's struggle to help everyone through his gift.

The Protagonist Founds Tenet

The ending of Tenet , Christopher Nolan's sci-fi follow-up to Interstellar , turned out to be even more confusing than that of its predecessor, and not just because of the inverted entropy concept. The entire plot wouldn't exist if the Protagonist hadn't founded the mysterious organization Tenet that helped him in the first place and led him to create it in the future. Tenet explores the notion of a person's future and past intertwining and being part of the same time loop, with no one able to tell what the original cause of the event was. The Protagonist's survival in the film depended solely on himself from the future, who apparently knew that his past self once needed saving.

4 Back to the Future

Marty mcfly has to bring his parents together, back to the future.

Back to the Future is the movie that started the time travel film craze in the first place, and it features one of the most well-known paradoxes in the genre. When Marty traveled to the past, he saved George's life by preventing a car accident, but in the aftermath of the events, he accidentally jeopardized his own existence and had to make his parents fall in love with each other all over again. However, since there was a possibility that Marty would never be born , he should have disintegrated right then and there in the 1950s before he had a chance to fix his own timeline.

RELATED: Back to the Future Writer Explains Marty’s Parents Plot Hole

3 Donnie Darko

The plane comes out of nowhere, donnie darko.

Donnie Darko is a stunning dark tale with a timeless message about a person forging their own fate. In the film, the protagonist sent the engine of the plane that would kill his mother and sister back in time and allowed it to fall on him to prevent the catastrophe. However, Donnie Darko 's timeline created a paradox in the fact that the plane existed in the first place. If the future had rewound and the plane had never started to crash, the engine couldn't have been there in the past to kill Donnie in his bedroom. The movie is incredibly thought-provoking in a way that more lighthearted time travel films never are.

2 12 Monkeys

James cole originates the virus.

12 Monkeys' post-apocalyptic nature paints its deterministic narrative in dark colors, adding to the eerie atmosphere of the story at hand. Bruce Willis' James Cole traveled to the past to prevent humanity's extinction , but his every action just led to the devastating virus scenario taking place in the end. 12 Monkeys' predestination paradox lied in the fact that if Cole hadn't planted the idea of the viral outbreak in the past, it wouldn't have happened at all. The protagonist's desperate attempts to stop the apocalypse explore the notion that there is no such thing as free will and that everything in life is already determined.

Aaron & Abe Create A Causal Loop

Primer is decidedly the time-travel movie that has the most rules on the subject and surprisingly follows them through with the help of extremely complicated tech jargon. Aaron and Abe discovered how to create a causal loop and use it to their own advantage. Unfortunately, their actions unraveled in a heap of consequences, and each attempt to fix the problem just made it a lot worse. Primer requires at least two or three watches to fully understand its core concepts and follow the characters' decisions with ease, but it is worth every minute of the time spent.

India’s First Time-Travel Movie Is a Blatant Star Wars Knockoff With a Groundbreaking Twist

Aditya 369 defies expectations at almost every turn.

Aditya 369 indian time travel movie

India’s first time-travel movie didn’t arrive until 1991, but when it finally did, it wasn’t afraid to imitate its influences. Or, in some cases, outright steal from them.

Borrowing equal inspiration from Back to the Future (1985) and Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989), Aditya 369 looks back even further in its opening scene to reference two foundational science fiction franchises. The Telugu-language film, commonly considered a touchstone of South Asian science fiction, opens on an eccentric scientist busying himself in a lab with his latest experiments. Then, bizarrely, the camera cuts to still images of the original posters for Star Wars and concept art of Star Trek’s starship Enterprise .

It might seem odd from a Western perspective that writer-director Singeetam Srinivasa Rao’s homage to H.G. Wells’ The Time Machine so blatantly evokes Hollywood’s most formative genre blockbusters (especially with such amusing disregard for copyright laws), but that’s only the first of the film’s many rejections of typical storytelling rules. More than three decades after its wildly successful theatrical release on July 18, 1991, nothing about Aditya 369 can be called conventional.

True to form, the sci-fi adventure unfolds in unpredictable, almost counterintuitive fashion. For one thing, the film eschews the obvious choice of focusing on the time machine’s kindly old inventor, Professor Ramdas (played by Tinnu Anand, but dubbed by S. P. Balasubrahmanyam to spruce up the musical numbers). Instead, much of the story is driven by humble factory worker Krishna Kumar (Nandamuri Balakrishna) and Ramdas’ beautiful daughter Hema (Mahalakshmi Sreenivasan, dubbed by Sripathi Panditaradhyula Sailaja).

Then there’s the genre-jumping tone. Aditya 369 begins as a comedic crime caper with the villainous Raja Varma (Amrish Puri), a wealthy museum patron and serial thief, taking center stage as he schemes to steal a priceless cultural artifact with magical properties. This plotline eventually intersects with Krishna and Hema’s syrupy sweet romance when their attempts to thwart Varma accidentally send them back in time to the year 1526.

Aditya 369

Krishna, Hema, and their anachronistic clothes at court in 1526.

If you’re familiar with Tollywood cinema, you might expect Aditya 369 to veer into preachy finger-wagging. After all, our heroes just traveled back to the height of the Vijayanagara Empire, a golden age of truth, dharma, and kindness. So this would be the perfect opportunity to present a sanitized take on Indian history (a common practice that we saw more recently in S. S. Rajamouli’s RRR with its nationalistic retelling of the lives of two revolutionary leaders). But where Tollywood typically zigs, Aditya 369 zags.

Instead of celebrating the past, Singeetam unleashes a farcical celebration of modernity. Despite their alien appearances, Krishna and Hema earn an invite to court alongside several famous historical scholars. Unable to help himself, Krishna earnestly explains the benefits of free elections, recites a classic poem while the poet is still composing it, and casually reveals the existence of something called “movies” (specifically the 1956 Tamil-language Tenali Raman , for the curious) to the crowd of slack-jawed ancients.

Aditya 369

Aditya 369 features the requisite dance sequence.

If this sounds like a scene out of Back to the Future , you’re not totally wrong (though Singeetham hotly disputes the comparison). However, by satirizing such revered historical figures, India’s first-ever time-travel movie is making a much larger point: The crucial stepping stones on the way to progress are worth honoring, but that must never come at the expense of progress.

Krishna and Hema take this literally when they jump into the time machine once more and travel far away to the year 2504, which is when Aditya 369 seems to take a fatalistic turn.

In stark contrast to the decadence of the past (and the economic upswing of the film’s present), the characters are horrified to find themselves in a barren, radioactive, post-WWIII India. Rescued by survivors now thriving in a retro-futuristic civilization underground, Krishna and Hema suddenly become the ignorant primitives gawking at wonders beyond their comprehension — from machines that read thoughts out loud to devices that propel them into yet another dance sequence (intercut with flashes to, incredibly enough, Salacious B. Crumb of Star Wars fame).

Aditya 369

Aditya 369 eventually arrives in a post-apocalyptic future where advanced humans live underground.

Aditya 369 saves its most poignant development for last. Krishna stumbles upon information about his demise in the present, having apparently sacrificed himself to rescue a kidnapped Ramdas from a vengeful Raja Varma. Sent home to his own time, Krishna resolutely accepts his fate… though one final twist saves the day and ends things on an optimistic note.

It’s a surprising ending to a joyful science-fiction adventure, one that challenged the status quo of Indian cinema and remains ahead of its time even three decades later.

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the history of time travel movie

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1.21 Gigawatts: The History of Time Travel in Cinema

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the history of time travel movie


the history of time travel movie

Sam is an English Literature student at the University of…

In some ways, the cinema is the closest thing we can experience to travelling through time – certainly the closest of any art form. In the dark room of a movie theatre, an audience can be transported to the distant past or spectacular visions of the future, and even in watching films from the 30’s and 40’s we can look at the lives and faces of people who died many years ago.

Time travel became popular as a literary device with HG Well’s The Time Machine – published in 1895, the same year that the Lumière Brothers made Arrival of a Train at La Ciotat . So time travel and cinema entered the public consciousness at the same time, and it has a long and fascinating history as a cinematic device. While rooted in science fiction, it has flitted around a variety of genres and even today filmmakers are exploring new ways to tell stories with it. Time travel is one of the most popular and interesting tropes in cinema and in this article we’ll look at how it’s developed through, well, time.

The earliest example of time travel in cinema dates to a 1921 adaptation of the Mark Twain story  A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court , of which only 3 of 8 original reels remain today. The film shows an American who dreams he is transported back to the time of King Arthur and defeats his foes using his contemporary knowledge.

source - Paramount Pictures

The success of this silent inspired a sound remake in 1931 and a musical starring Bing Crosby in 1949. A Connecticut Yankee  set the formula for other travel films of this era – the hero is typically whisked back against his own will to the past, where he engages in adventures and falls in love with a beautiful woman. Examples include   I’ll Never Forget You  (1951) and Berkeley Square  (1933), which both send their hero to the 18th century.

It’s clear to see the appeal for audiences of the time, who could find new enjoyment through identifying with a contemporary protagonist in the for the escapist historical adventures that were popular at the time. At this point, then, the time travel itself was merely a device to get the character into the period setting, and fairly unimportant to the plot. These early experiments were firmly in the realm of fantasy – but this would change with the rise of science fiction in the 1950’s and beyond.

Developing ideas

The first year of the 60’s saw one of the most significant time travel films: George Pal ‘s adaptation of  The Time Machine ,  the novel that started it all. The Victorian setting of the original novel remains, as a British inventor (named H.G. Wells in tribute) travels to the year 802,701, where far-future human descendants are hunted by subterranean Morlocks. The Time Machine was in some ways hugely ahead of its time, most significantly in the Oscar-winning visual effects, which use a combination of time-lapse photography and stop motion animation to depict flowers blooming, candles melting and the sun arcing across the sky in a matter of seconds.

The Time Machine

Here we can see the visual potential of the time travel film come to fruition, in a way that only the cinema medium can provide. But more importantly Pal ‘s film updated the novel to provide an ominous social commentary, as Wells witnesses a nuclear holocaust on his journey to the future – dated at 1966, just 6 years after the film’s actual release. This, then, was an early example of using time travel to say something about the present; in this case, the fear of nuclear annihilation at the height of the Cold War.

A similar concept can be seen in a lesser known piece, the experimental French film   La Jetee (1962).  In this 28 minute short, which is constructed almost entirely from a series of photographs, a man from a post-apocalyptic Paris is chosen to be sent back before World War Three to warn the people of the past about the future. A key inspiration for the plot of Terry Gilliam’s   Twelve Monkeys,  it   remains one of world cinema’s first and most significant forays into time travel.

Time travel breaks out

The 70’s were something of a bleak era: Wikipedia lists just seven time travel films for the whole decade, and two are sequels to Planet of the Apes , in which time travel is only used incidentally. But the 1980’s saw an explosion of popularity for the genre, and many of its most famous movies come from this time. Much of this stems from the huge success of 1984’s  The Terminator . 

The Terminator (1984) - source: Orion Pictures

The iconic Terminator character is what launched the careers of James Cameron and Arnold Schwarzenegger , which may be a good or terrible thing for the history of cinema, but the inventive plot – a robot from the future sent back to kill the future mother of a resistance fighter -showed us that the protagonist doesn’t have to travel at all; it’s the antagonist from a future environment who arrives in the present. The Terminator  was released just months before one of the biggest films and franchises of the decade became perhaps the definitive image of time travel on screen: the still ridiculously enjoyable  Back to the Future .

  Robert Zemeckis  and  Bob Gale  mined the comic potential of the genre by sending an 80’s teenager back to 1955 – via, of course, a beaten up DeLorean – where he attracts the friendship of his geeky dad and the romantic attention of his mother. It’s the culture clash that results from a gap of 30 years, instead of hundreds, that makes this film so effective; far away enough to be alien, but close enough to be recognisable. And despite being firmly entrenched in 80’s culture, the film manages to avoid feeling dated by embracing the atmosphere of the decade so well that it feels like a loving tribute rather than what was, at the time, present day. The appeal of seeing Marty McFly interacting with all the 50’s stereotypes and considering how you would react to watching your own dad get bullied or your own mother trying to flirt with you turned Back to the Future into one of the most successful films of the 80’s.

The effect of this   success was instant, inspiring other films to use time travel as a device for comedy rather than adventure, or simply to spice up existing concepts and tropes. High school comedy  Peggy Sue Got Married  (directed by Francis Ford Coppola of all people)   and slacker cult classic  Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure   were huge hits;  Star Trek IV  saw the crew of the Enterprise beam down to 1986. Meanwhile both  Terminator  and  Back to the Future  were establishing themselves in popular culture with a slew of sequels – many consider Terminator 2 to be even better than the original, and Back to the Future Part 2 was so popular that Marty and Doc’s visit to 2015 is going to be immortalised all year.

Present Day

After time travel became such a popular plot device in mainstream cinema in the 80’s, the films of the next few decades continued to explore more inventive and artful ways to use it. The previously mentioned Twelve Monkeys   took the idea of a time traveller coming to warn us of the future, only to be assumed insane; Shane Carruth’s  impenetrable  Primer , about an accidentally created time machine and shot for just $7,000, has earned a reputation as one of the most cerebral and confusing science fiction films ever.

So where does it go from here? Time travel is being increasingly used in modern cinema – from thrillers like  Source Code   and Edge of Tomorrow ,   which use the concept of time loops, the protagonist reliving the same period of time repeatedly, blockbusters like  X-Men: Days of Future Past  and even  Woody Allen  comedies (2011’s Oscar winning  Midnight in Paris ).

Edge of Tomorrow (2014) - source: Warner Bros. Pictures

Last year, Christopher Nolan’s   Interstellar  presented perhaps the most realistic representation of time travel yet from a scientific perspective. Using real concepts of gravitational time dilation the film saw its characters experiencing time at different rates depending on their relative position to a black hole – a scenario that would actually happen if we found ourselves too close to one. But then, can such concepts be described as time travel at all if they’re rooted in real science?

The genre – and with 6 mainstream American films using time travel in 2014, it is time for it to be considered a genre – has proven over a century to consistently provide ideas and narratives that capture audiences, and can translate itself to action, drama and comedy with equal success. There is clearly something encased in the simple idea of a protagonist travelling to another point in time that captures the attention and imagination of cinema audiences, and there is endless potential for more. If only we could travel to the future and see where it’s at in 30 years time.

What is your favourite use of time travel in film? Let us know in the comments!

(top image:  Back To The Future  – source: Universal Pictures)

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the history of time travel movie

Sam is an English Literature student at the University of Sheffield. He likes film, writing, and writing about film. He didn't think Prometheus was that bad.



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'The Adam Project' & 9 Best Time Travel Movies on Netflix

For more mind-bending time travel adventures.

Read update

No matter the time period, time travel movies have always been popular. Whether it is the latest Ryan Reynolds and Netflix collaboration The Adam Project or the sci-fi action masterpiece The Terminator , time travel fans are spoiled for choice. Netflix in particular has plenty of great movies in the genre worth visiting, and some of the best time travel movies on Netflix will have you watching them over and over again.

In Netflix time travel movie The Adam Project , Ryan Reynolds plays a fighter pilot from the future, who crash lands in the present and meets his 12-year-old self. Together they must save the world in a journey that harkens back to Amblin classics from the 1980s while featuring some great needle drops.

Time travel stories have always been a popular narrative choice, with the highest-grossing film of all time, Avengers: Endgame , fitting in the genre. Videogames such as Mortal Kombat 11 also use time travel to great effect. But with The Adam Project being a Netflix original, there are more time travel movies on Netflix to watch after seeing Reynolds quip his way through another memorable performance.

Updated on May 28, 2023, by Ty Weinert:

10 'naked' (2017).

Rob ( Marlon Wayans ) is about to marry the girl of his dreams, Megan ( Regina Hall ). But after a night out with his best friend results in Rob waking up naked in an elevator, he must race to the altar to make it in time. Failing that, Rob wakes up again in the elevator, realizing he is trapped in a time loop and must relive the hour over and over again.

Working like a mix of The Hangover and Groundhog Day , Naked will appeal to anyone who enjoyed those screwball comedies. While it is not one of the best time loop movies , it still offers some laughs and is a good enough way to kill an afternoon on the couch.

Watch on Netflix

9 'Captain Nova' (2021)

Like The Adam Project , Captain Nova follows a fighter pilot who is sent back in time to stop a catastrophe. Nova ( Kika Van De Vijver ) finds herself transformed into her younger self due to her journey through time, however, making it hard for adults to take her seriously as she warns them of the dangers to come.

Hailing from the Netherlands, Captain Nova makes for a nice change from the American movies that dominate the time travel genre on Netflix. Due to its protagonist's youthful transformation, Captain Nova is a kid-friendly take on the formula and can be enjoyed by the whole family.

8 'See You Yesterday' (2019)

Produced by legendary director Spike Lee , See You Yesterday follows two teenage scientists, who are attempting to create a time machine. After one of their older brothers is killed in a police shooting, the pair activate their machine to travel to the past and save him.

While still following the conventions of time travel movies, See You Yesterday stands out with a plot that focuses on relevant social issues. By bringing light to matters that are still plaguing society four years after release, the film is a unique choice within the time travel Netflix catalog.

7 'In the Shadow of the Moon' (2019)

Beginning in 1988, In the Shadow of the Moon follows Thomas Lockhart ( Boyd Holbrook ), a police officer determined to become a detective. When his city is plagued by a serial killer, Lockhart begins investigating, eventually discovering the killer comes back every nine years. As the case deepens, time travel eventually becomes a factor.

In the Shadow of the Moon feels like a callback to the detective thrillers of the '90s, like Se7en . While it does tend to lose focus as more outrageous plot points are introduced, In the Shadow of the Moon remains a solid choice for anyone looking to discover their next crime obsession.

6 'Synchronic' (2019)

Another quality entry in acclaimed duo Aaron Moorhead and Justin Benson 's trippy shared universe , Synchronic stars Anthony Mackie and Jamie Dornan as paramedics and lifelong friends. After a new drug sweeps their city, resulting in the deaths of its users, the pair investigates after Dornan's daughter goes missing.

The film delves into time travel in ways that will not be spoiled here, but needless to say Synchronic is a trippy film with a central mystery that unravels over time. Both leads excel in their roles and share great chemistry, with Mackie, in particular, delivering a fantastic performance that shows what he can offer when given more meaty roles outside the MCU.

5 'ARQ' (2016)

Waking up to intruders breaking into his home, an engineer ( Robbie Amell ) finds himself trapped within a time loop. With each death sending him back to the start of the invasion, he works to defeat his pursuers and escape with his lover ( Rachael Taylor ).

ARQ works as a sci-fi spin on films such as Happy Death Day , with the audience learning new information alongside the protagonist with each subsequent loop and eventual death. While not as charming as Happy Death Day , ARQ still offers an enjoyable take on the genre.

4 'When We First Met' (2018)

When We First Met follows Adam DeVine , of Workaholics fame, as he repeatedly goes back in time to try and win over the girl of his dreams ( Alexandra Daddario ). Being a romantic comedy, the film stands apart from other time travel movies that focus on more serious consequences.

While We First Met does not offer much new to the genre, though DeVine gives an admirable performance to help carry the film. Fans of his stand-up or the aforementioned Workaholics should have a good time watching his numerous attempts to escape the hellish nightmare called "the friend zone."

3 'Long Story Short' (2021)

Waking up the morning after his wedding to discover that his life is jumping forward in time every few minutes, Teddy ( Rafe Spall ) is forced to use his dwindling time to stay with the woman he loves. With every jump causing them to drift further apart, time is running out for the bumbling lead.

Like When We First Met , Long Story Short uses time travel in a romantic comedy , albeit in a more urgent way. The Australian film was directed by Josh Lawson , known to audiences as Kano, the best part of the recent Mortal Kombat film.

2 'The Adam Project' (2022)

When fighter pilot Adam Reed (Ryan Reynolds) travels from 2050 to 2012, he is forced to work together with his 12-year-old self in order to get back home and save his deceased wife Laura ( Zoe Saldana ). The two Adams end up going on a journey full of heart and humor as they travel through time.

The latest in the long line of big-budget blockbusters on Netflix, The Adam Project is one of the best free movies you can access on the service. Reynolds is always a charming lead, and along with Saldana, they are supported by a winning cast that includes Mark Ruffalo , Jennifer Garner , and Catherine Keener .

1 'Mirage' (2018)

When Vera ( Adriana Ugarte ) and her family move into a new home, they discover that a boy died there thirty years ago. Finding a way to communicate with the boy in the past, Vera warns him of his death and saves his life, only to change the flow of time in the process.

As the best time travel movie Netflix has to offer, Mirage is a compelling mystery thriller from Spain. As more circumstances of the boy's death emerge, greater narrative threads are pulled into this time-bending journey, with Ugarte delivering a great performance as the central character.

NEXT: The Best Time Travel Movies Ever Made, Ranked

The Conversation

The Conversation

Is time travel even possible? An astrophysicist explains the science behind the science fiction

Posted: November 13, 2023 | Last updated: November 13, 2023

Curious Kids is a series for children of all ages. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, send it to [email protected] .

Will it ever be possible for time travel to occur? – Alana C., age 12, Queens, New York

Have you ever dreamed of traveling through time, like characters do in science fiction movies? For centuries, the concept of time travel has captivated people’s imaginations. Time travel is the concept of moving between different points in time, just like you move between different places. In movies, you might have seen characters using special machines, magical devices or even hopping into a futuristic car to travel backward or forward in time.

But is this just a fun idea for movies, or could it really happen?

The question of whether time is reversible remains one of the biggest unresolved questions in science. If the universe follows the laws of thermodynamics , it may not be possible. The second law of thermodynamics states that things in the universe can either remain the same or become more disordered over time.

It’s a bit like saying you can’t unscramble eggs once they’ve been cooked. According to this law, the universe can never go back exactly to how it was before. Time can only go forward, like a one-way street.

Time is relative

However, physicist Albert Einstein’s theory of special relativity suggests that time passes at different rates for different people. Someone speeding along on a spaceship moving close to the speed of light – 671 million miles per hour! – will experience time slower than a person on Earth.

People have yet to build spaceships that can move at speeds anywhere near as fast as light, but astronauts who visit the International Space Station orbit around the Earth at speeds close to 17,500 mph. Astronaut Scott Kelly has spent 520 days at the International Space Station, and as a result has aged a little more slowly than his twin brother – and fellow astronaut – Mark Kelly. Scott used to be 6 minutes younger than his twin brother. Now, because Scott was traveling so much faster than Mark and for so many days, he is 6 minutes and 5 milliseconds younger .

Some scientists are exploring other ideas that could theoretically allow time travel. One concept involves wormholes , or hypothetical tunnels in space that could create shortcuts for journeys across the universe. If someone could build a wormhole and then figure out a way to move one end at close to the speed of light – like the hypothetical spaceship mentioned above – the moving end would age more slowly than the stationary end. Someone who entered the moving end and exited the wormhole through the stationary end would come out in their past.

However, wormholes remain theoretical: Scientists have yet to spot one. It also looks like it would be incredibly challenging to send humans through a wormhole space tunnel.

Paradoxes and failed dinner parties

There are also paradoxes associated with time travel. The famous “ grandfather paradox ” is a hypothetical problem that could arise if someone traveled back in time and accidentally prevented their grandparents from meeting. This would create a paradox where you were never born, which raises the question: How could you have traveled back in time in the first place? It’s a mind-boggling puzzle that adds to the mystery of time travel.

Famously, physicist Stephen Hawking tested the possibility of time travel by throwing a dinner party where invitations noting the date, time and coordinates were not sent out until after it had happened. His hope was that his invitation would be read by someone living in the future, who had capabilities to travel back in time. But no one showed up.

As he pointed out : “The best evidence we have that time travel is not possible, and never will be, is that we have not been invaded by hordes of tourists from the future.”

Telescopes are time machines

Interestingly, astrophysicists armed with powerful telescopes possess a unique form of time travel. As they peer into the vast expanse of the cosmos, they gaze into the past universe. Light from all galaxies and stars takes time to travel, and these beams of light carry information from the distant past. When astrophysicists observe a star or a galaxy through a telescope, they are not seeing it as it is in the present, but as it existed when the light began its journey to Earth millions to billions of years ago.

NASA’s newest space telescope, the James Webb Space Telescope , is peering at galaxies that were formed at the very beginning of the Big Bang, about 13.7 billion years ago.

While we aren’t likely to have time machines like the ones in movies anytime soon, scientists are actively researching and exploring new ideas. But for now, we’ll have to enjoy the idea of time travel in our favorite books, movies and dreams.

Hello, curious kids! Do you have a question you’d like an expert to answer? Ask an adult to send your question to [email protected] . Please tell us your name, age and the city where you live.

And since curiosity has no age limit – adults, let us know what you’re wondering, too. We won’t be able to answer every question, but we will do our best.

This article is republished from The Conversation , >, a nonprofit, independent news organization bringing you facts and analysis to help you make sense of our complex world.

  • New postage stamp honors Chien-Shiung Wu, trailblazing nuclear physicist
  • How do astronomers know the age of the planets and stars?

Adi Foord does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.

If traveling into the past is possible, one way to do it might be sending people through tunnels in space.

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Importance of architecture in aesthetic movies.

the history of time travel movie

Holding hands with the phrase ‘books are a window to the world,’ aesthetic movies are a definition of a literal window to a realm of imagination put forward by a crew of artistic geniuses on silver screens. Everyone reading a book tends to imagine the story and its scenes based on their existing knowledge and imaginative systems. Paradoxically, in the case of movies, the audience sits through layers of visuals created by the on and off-screen teams, encouraging people to form opinions based on the depth of sensitivity in which they perceive the story and its characters. If characters are the soul of a movie, the plot, architecture of sets, sounds, and editing fabricate its body.

Importance of architecture in aesthetic movies. - Sheet1

Architecture: An amusing ride to time travel

Importance of architecture in aesthetic movies. - Sheet2

A myriad of genres of films are based on different timelines. The foremost thing the audience deciphers in a movie is the timeline based on the portrayal of the opening scene. The film  Oppenheimer , directed by  Christopher Nolan , based on the life of the Father of the Atomic Bomb, revolves around 1924-1963, covering the main character’s prime for 40 years in 3 hours. Handling two perspectives simultaneously, the scenes keep leaping from one timeline to the other between the main character’s past and present with intelligent deliveries of dialogues to hook on. The architecture in the film briefly encapsulates Oppenheimer’s life at the university, the Manhattan Project site, and the claustrophobic interrogation room in an immersive cohesion with the audience.

Architecture: A Visual Medium for Movement

Importance of architecture in aesthetic movies. - Sheet3

Mystery, thriller, and horror genres anticipate anxiety in the audience. To create this mood, architecture and interior design details must be at the top or at par with the main characters’ performances. The movies based on  Dan Brown’s  books, famously called the ‘ Robert Langdon Series,’  are hinged on an intricate set of events that lead the protagonist from one mystery to another while simultaneously hopping from one solution to the next chronologically.  The Da Vinci Code, Angels and Demons,  and  Inferno  cling to famous museums, iconic cathedrals, and historic structures to sway the characters along the storyline. These movies picture the interiors of iconic buildings, taking the audience on a virtual tour, often leaving them stunned and enchanted in the process. 

Importance of architecture in aesthetic movies. - Sheet4

The movie  The Grand Budapest Hotel  tells the story of the mountainside illustrious “Grand Budapest Hotel” in the European state, the Republic of Zubrowka. It narrates the quest of Gustave H. and Zero Moustafa, the hotel’s lobby boy, who becomes his trustworthy friend. Aided by an engaging, comical plot and aesthetically exquisite scenes, this film is showered in pastel and vivid filtered frames. The use of symmetry, repetitive perspectives, and calculated movements by the characters create a classic Wes Anderson art form for people to delve into. 

Architecture: A Metaphor for Emotions

Importance of architecture in aesthetic movies. - Sheet5

Micro and macro set designs primarily appeal to specific triggers like claustrophobia, agoraphobia, and acrophobia. The characters’ movement through different spaces filled with surprises makes people bite their nails or close their eyes as a response to the stimuli, highlighting it as an excellent sign of their valuable engagement in comprehending the art form. Taking the example of the movie  Grave of The Fireflies , by Ghibli Studio, directed by  Hayao Miyazaki,  one can unravel the protagonist’s journey, a survivor of the firebombing in Kobe, Japan, in 1945. It sheds light on the implications of using deadly weapons in civilian areas. The transition between the attacks’ past, present, and future is depicted brilliantly through architecture; the old houses switched by the demolished homes, people and orphans ending up living on streets, and the destruction of the infrastructure don’t fail to invoke empathy in the audience.

Importance of architecture in aesthetic movies. - Sheet6

Likewise, in the movie  Blade Runner 2049 , directed by  Denis Villeneuve , observing the protagonist’s journey while meeting fellow characters showcases loneliness, power, ego, imagination, and confusion through dystopian and brutalist architecture, weaved with the play of lights, shadows, golden ratio, and intelligent placement of elements like water, pushing the cinematic experience to a stellar level.

Architecture to Explore Futuristic Boundaries Fueled with Imagination and Science

Importance of architecture in aesthetic movies. - Sheet7

Stanley Kubrick’s  2001: A Space Odyssey  and its sequel,  2010: The Year We Make Contact  by 

Peter Hyams serves stunning visuals showcasing the interiors and exteriors of spacecraft in a journey to find the origin of the mysterious  monolith  they discover on the Earth, the moon, and in the vicinity of Jupiter’s moon Europa. The film takes the viewer on a mystical ride, creating a captivating experience through futuristic sets. Sequences of events placed skilfully throughout the movie give traction to psychological responses. The use of lights in symmetrical patterns and frequent comebacks of monochromatic interiors ensure the audience is clammed to their seats the whole time. 

Importance of architecture in aesthetic movies. - Sheet8

Another majestic example of a film that teleports the viewer to another dimension is  Dune  by  Denis Villeneuve . Its narrative focuses on the battle between good and evil, touching on complex themes like colonialism and environmentalism . The movement of characters through the brutalist imperial city Arrakeen settled in the middle of a desert with remarkably conscious architectural plans, placements of lights, reflections and encryptions on walls, gigantic doors and windows, skylights , and cavernous corridors succeeds in transporting the audience to the otherworldly planet as intended.

the history of time travel movie

Along with the above-discussed points, architecture is also utilized as a metaphor to show societal differences, as spotlighted in the movie Parasite , by South Korean director Bong Joon-ho , where the characters display their spectrum of experiences founded on their financial status. It paints a holistic picture of the social hierarchy that blinds people from each other’s sufferings.

Architecture has been a powerful tool to narrate cinema through the lens of art directors and cinematographers for decades. The transition from shooting at real locations to creating captivating environments through CGI, inventing new techniques to execute the desired art form as imagined on screen, takes tremendous talent and effort. With parametric and futuristic architectural designs and artificial intelligence tools assisted by continuously upgrading modeling softwares , materials, and construction technologies, the future of cinema will keep chasing new heights.

Citations for Magazine Articles – Print or Online:

  • Dejtiar, F. (2021). Jacinta Leong on Architecture in Movies: ‘Films Can Tell Us How Things Are and How Things Can Be’ . [online] ArchDaily. Available at: [Accessed 7 Sep. 2023].
  • Online sources
  • dleain (2020). Architecture in Cinema Series – Elements | DLEA . [online] DLEA. Available at: [Accessed 6 Sep. 2023].
  • Hood, C. (2023). Oppenheimer Timeline – All Events In Chronological Order. [online] ScreenRant. Available at: [Accessed 7 Sep. 2023].
  • Nast, C. (2016). The Historic Filming Locations of Inferno . [online] Architectural Digest. Available at: [Accessed 8 Sep. 2023].
  • Gerlinger, M. and Cipolla, T. (2022). What is a blade runner? Unpacking Ridley Scott’s cyberpunk aesthetics. [online] Linearity blog. Available at: [Accessed 9 Sep. 2023].
  • Nast, C. (2021). In Dune, the Architecture of the Future Is All About Harmony With the Landscape. [online] Architectural Digest. Available at: [Accessed 8 Sep. 2023].
  • Images/visual mediums
  • Warner Bros Pictures, Legendary Pictures and Chia Bella James (2023). In Dune, the Architecture of the Future Is All About Harmony With the Landscape . [online] . Available at: [Accessed 8 Sep. 2023].
  • N.M.Credit…Universal Pictures (2023). ‘Oppenheimer’ Review: A Man for Our Time . [online] The New York Times . Available at: [Accessed 7 Sep. 2023].
  • Stamp, E. (2016). The Historic Filming Locations of Inferno . [online] Available at: [Accessed 8 Sep. 2023].
  • Wallpaper Abyss. (n.d.). The Grand Budapest Hotel HD Wallpaper | Background Image | 3652×2752 | ID:760735 . [online] Available at: [Accessed 9 Sep. 2023].
  • davexsensei (2017). Studio Ghibli’s: Grave of the Fireflies . [online] Imgur. Available at: [Accessed 9 Sep. 2023].
  • Dowding, L. (2018). 270+ Blade Runner 2049 4k Screen Shots / Frame Captures . [online] Luke Dowding – on the web. Available at: [Accessed 9 Sep. 2023].
  • Sluss, J. (2018). 2001: A Space Odyssey – 4K UHD Blu-ray Screenshots . [online] HighDefDiscNews. Available at: [Accessed 24 Oct. 2023].
  • Hilburg, J. (2021). Designing Dune Required Mining the past to Build Humanity’s Future . [online] The Architect’s Newspaper. Available at: [Accessed 24 Oct. 2023].
  • Finn, P. (2023). The Architecture of Inequality: On Bong Joon-ho’s ‘Parasite’ . [online] Available at: [Accessed 9 Sep. 2023].

Importance of architecture in aesthetic movies. - Sheet1

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The History of Time Travel (2014)

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    1 Video 18 Photos Drama Sci-Fi A fictional documentary about the creation of the worlds first time machine, the men who created it, and the unintended ramifications it has on world events. Director Ricky Kennedy Writer Ricky Kennedy Stars Stephen Adami Krista Ales Valerie Black See production, box office & company info Watch on Prime Video

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    The History of Time Travel (2014) Full Cast & Crew See agents for this cast & crew on IMDbPro Directed by Ricky Kennedy Writing Credits (in alphabetical order) Cast Produced by Music by Herbert Midgley Cinematography by Justin Herring Film Editing by Ricky Kennedy Production Design by Nancy Andrew Art Direction by Alexander Karkosh Victoria Stone

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    The History of Time Travel. Available on Prime Video. A fictional documentary about the creation of the world's first time machine, those who created it, and the unintended ramifications it has on world events. Sci-Fi 2014 1 hr 11 min. Starring Krista Ales, Elizabeth Lestina, Daniel W. May.

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    Michael J. Bauers An interesting take on a cliched genre Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on December 27, 2022 Verified Purchase I admit it. I was very bored by time travel as a plot, having seen and read too many versions in my life. What was really left to be said? In the case of this movie, I don't think the plot is that important.

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    9/22/2022 12:00:00 AM. 1/1/0001 12:00:00 AM. A documentary on the history and pop culture of time travel. Featuring interviews with MIT Professor Erik Demaine, Sci-Fi writer Daniel Wilson, and T.V. show host Bill Nye.

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    Runtime. 113 minutes. The Butterfly Effect is one of the most mind-blowing time travel movies out there, partly because the rules are very specific, and yet they make no sense whatsoever. The movie featured quite a few time paradoxes, but the biggest one was probably the existence of Evan's blackouts. Young Evan experienced blackouts, caused by ...

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    In the dark room of a movie theatre, an audience can be transported to the distant past or spectacular visions of the future, and even in watching films from the 30's and 40's we can look at the lives and faces of people who died many years ago. Time travel became popular as a literary device with HG Well's The Time Machine - published ...

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    Architecture: An amusing ride to time travel A still from the movie Oppenheimer_©N.M. Universal Pictures via The New York Times. A myriad of genres of films are based on different timelines. The foremost thing the audience deciphers in a movie is the timeline based on the portrayal of the opening scene.

  29. The History of Time Travel (2014)

    The History of Time Travel (2014) 83 Reviews Hide Spoilers Filter by Rating: 10/10 Watching it again mattoid-45605 10 April 2019 I caught this on Amazon and loved it! So much happens in a subtle way as the film goes forward, I felt I needed to watch it again. I'm glad I did. There were a number of things I totally missed.