Review for Time Bandits UHD Blu-ray
Time Bandits tells the story of Kevin, a young boy with a big imagination, who accidentally gets kidnapped by a group of little people who have stolen a special map. This map, stolen from the Supreme Being, shows all the holes in creation which lead to different parts of history.
Through these holes they travel to the Napoleonic Wars and encounter a size-obsessed Napoleon, to the middle ages where they meet Robin Hood, who steals all the loot they had been stealing and give it to the poor in an almost Regal ceremony.
Throughout the whole adventure The Evil Leader is trying to trick the team so that he can steal and exploit the map. The Time Bandits must use all the skills to make sure that this doesn’t happen.
I absolutely love this film. It is possibly one of the best films of the 1980s and I was not surprised by how well this film still holds up. Directed by Terry Gilliam, who co-wrote with fellow Python Michael Palin, this is such a wonderful family film that just skirts the genres between being too scary for the kids and too childish for the adults. As with all Gilliam’s work it looks phenomenal and it is shocking that the film did not receive any accolades, at least for the visual presentation such as the amazing effects and costumes (though saying that this was the year of Raiders of the Lost Ark, but it deserved a nomination at least).
As a Monty Python fan, I always loved this film and the cameo by John Cleese as Robin Hood ‘Jolly Good’ and Michael Palin who appears a number of times as a time-crossed lover with ‘a problem’ is just perfect. The films’ cast is perfect with Sean Connery as the Greek Agamemnon, Ian Holm as Napoleon and David Warner stealing the show as the impetuous and spoilt Evil ‘Nipples for men?... Are we not in the hands of a lunatic?’
The cast of little people lead by David Rappaport as Randall is just perfect and apart from Willow this is one of the few times when they are used as main characters and not stuck inside suits or costumes.
I loved re-watching this film, even more so now that I could show my children who loved the film too. The mix of tones and genres is perfect and so well balanced that it is a great gateway entry to the world of Monty Python and classic British comedy.
This set comes with a vast amount of special features.
These include an interview with Writer/Director Terry Gilliam. He is great to hear him talk about the making of the film. He clearly loved making the film and his partnership with fellow Python Michael Palin was clearly one he enjoyed. Full of some great stories and I do wish he had contributed a commentary to the film (I will comment on this later).
Interview with Writer/Actor Michael Palin is a great discussion with this wonderful man about how he came to work with Terry Gilliam and talks about their relationship which is just wonderful. It was great to listen to how he wrote the film almost like a series of sketches.
Kent Houston talks about the special effects for the film. This was interesting but could have done with some visuals as he was talking about certain parts.
David Warner talks about playing Evil and he clearly loved being in the film and looking back on it. He talks like a Python fan and it was great listening to him talk about it. Talking about his costume is a hilarious story.
James Acheson talks about some of the costumes from the film. This is more visual, with him going through some of the original sketches for the film.
Milly Burns talks about the Production Design for the film has its moments, but like the others it could have been better as an audio interview over a slideshow of Stills and Sketches. She also in a separate video takes us through a look at the production notes, storyboards to show how certain scenes were created. I do wish this had been a side by side look to show just how they matched the final film.
Finally we have a Trailer, which is fine, but nothing special. Despite how great all these extras are (and they are) I am shocked and stunned that they did not include extras from the previous sets such as the DVD Commentary, Production Sketches and Stills and other behind the scenes parts which had been in other sets. Other than a rights issue, I can’t see why they did this as it means I would say that you should own both to get the complete celebration of this wonderful film.
Time Bandits is a wonderful film for all the family, and I would definitely recommend to fans of Science Fiction and Fantasy film. It does not have anything in it that would offend, and the PG rating is likely because of some of the scary visuals which are nothing compared to anything else out there. I love this film and with the upcoming Time Bandits Television series coming then this is a perfect time to take some time with the original bandits.