PCS Blog

The Art of Time Travel

Posted by Desirae MacGillivray | 29 May 2013

Time travel is a common theme or plot device within the science fiction genre. One of the most unique aspects of the Somewhere in Time story is that, through its use of time travel, it combines science fiction with a grand, sweeping romance. Crossover genre alert!
 
The concept of time travel was used as a plot device long before Richard Collier traveled back to Elise McKenna in Richard Matheson’s Bid Time Return, the novel upon which Somewhere in Time was based. In fact, the notion of travelling through time can be traced back as far as 700 B.C. In ancient Hindu mythology, the Mahabharatha mentions the story of King Revaita, who travels to a different world to meet the creator Brahma. The King is shocked to learn that many ages have passed when he returns to Earth.
 
Other famous time travel stories include Back to the Future, The Time Machine, Slaughterhouse-Five, Planet of the Apes, The Time Traveler’s Wife, Frequency and Time After Time. Let's take a closer peek at each of these time travelling tales...
 
 

 
Back to the Future
The infamous film Back to the Future, starring Michael J. Fox, is story about a teenager named Marty McFly. He is accidentally sent back in time 30 years, from 1985 to 1955, with the help of scientist Dr. Emmett “Doc” Brown, who created the time machine. In 1955, Marty meets his future parents when they are in high school. He learns that his existence at the high school is jeopardizing his parents from starting their relationship, and in order to make his parents’ love story carry on (and ensure his eventual birth), Marty must return to 1985. In the sequel, Back to the Future Part II, Marty travels in the future to the year 2015. I think it's safe to say we won't have hoverboards, flying cars and power shoelaces by then.

The Time Machine
The Time Machine, based on an 1895 novel by H. G. Wells, was produced as a film in 1960. The film starred Rod Taylor as the Time Traveller. It should also be mentioned that Wells' original novel was instrumental in moving the concept of time travel to the forefront of the public imagination. You can't mention time travel without mentioning the great H. G. Wells!
 
Slaughterhouse-Five
Slaughterhouse-Five, produced in 1972, depicts a man telling a story about how he became "unstuck" in time and was abducted by aliens. The film starred Michael Sacks. 
 
 
Planet of the Apes
The original Planet of the Apes was produced in 1968 and starred Charlton Heston. The story surrounds an astronaut crew who lands on a mysterious planet in the distant future. Talking apes are the main species in the foreign land.
 
The Time Traveler's Wife
Another romance! The Time Traveler’s Wife was produced in 2009 and starred Rachel McAdams (one of our favorite leading ladies). The film tells the story of a married couple. But their relationship is anything but ordinary; the husband has a condition that causes him to involuntarily travel back and forward in time. This ultimately - and obviously - causes troubles in their marriage.
 
Frequency
Frequency was released in 2000 and starred Dennis Quaid and Jim Caviezel. The story is about a father and son who come in contact with one another accidentally over a radio frequency. Although no one physically travels back or forward in time,  the father and son speak to each other through the radio, 30 years apart. The son tries to save his father’s life, but must pay the consequences for doing so.
 

 

Time After Time

Time After Time was produced in 1979 and starred Malcolm McDowell. The main character, H.G. Wells (Malcolm), has his time machine stolen by Jack the Ripper during his pursuit to find the serial killer. You might say it was a spoof of H.G. Wells' The Time Machine.


 

 

 

Comments (0)

There are no comments for this entry yet.

Join the conversation!

Portland Center Stage welcomes your comments and criticism.

We invite you to share your comments with us on our Facebook page.

Ticketing

For current and upcoming shows, please see our Season Calendar.


Sign up for the PCS email list.

Season Sponsors

Accessibility