Review of Time Bandits (1981)

Moving picture, 110 minutes

Terry Gilliam (director).

On the verge of sleep, a boy discovers that his suburban bedroom contains a “time portal”, one of many flaws in the fabric of the universe. Six dwarves who have been charged with repairing the holes are on the run from Yahweh because they decided to get rich quick. They drag the boy with them into a quest for treasure spanning thousands of years, extending even into the Time of Legends.

A child-friendly adventure with both Palin (also co-writer) and Cleese among the supporting actors. This early film prefigures much of what Gilliam would be doing in better films, with its surrealism, black humour and anti-commercial subversiveness. However, as in the terminal phase of his career, there is a lot of slack and incoherence, and the indictment of Christianity is superficial.

References here: “Terry Gilliam” tag description, The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1988), Twelve Monkeys (1995), “The Wholly Family” (2011).

moving picture fiction