Tuesday, 18 February 2014
The Time Guardian (1987)
Rarely has an actor been so miscast as Tom Burlinson is in this film. Every hackneyed movie tough guy line he utters sounds utterly false and forced, thudding leadenly out of the screen. During marketing before the film came out, he said 'I've never played a role like this before', and good grief, it shows.
Burlinson is the eponymous Time Guardian ('Time is the only thing he won't waste!'), whose home city travels through time as a way of avoiding the fallout of the Neutron Wars. Alas, they're pursued by evil cyborgs who are also able to travel through time. This is all conveyed through a text scrawl. And narration. And character dialogue. And oh god I get it they're time travellers chased by evil cyborgs shut up movie.
For reasons, Burlinson has to come to contemporary Earth and bang a sexy geologist. I mean, that probably wasn't actually his mission brief, but it's the only thing I actually saw him accomplish. But then, being useful is not something people in this film seem terribly interested in. They're very committed to doing the stupidest thing possible in the circumstances, though. In fact, it would be fair to say that almost none of the events of the film would happen if someone on screen wasn't being utterly incompetent.
This is gloriously, hysterically awful, and probably counts as a low point of the careers of almost all involved. I say 'almost all', because Dean Stockwell is in this, and he lives by a different standard.
Check it out only if you want to hurl mockery at the screen for an hour and a half. Of course, if you do want to do that, it's perfect.