Time Bandits (1981)

Time Bandits
Time Bandits (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Ex–Monty Pythonite Terry Gilliam’s second solo feature is a nutty, sui generis fantasy-comedy crack-up about a rebel band of time-traveling dwarves bouncing through history (both documented and completely nonsensical). The rambunctious journey is made possible by a certain time-portal map desired by both the underworldly Evil Genius (David Warner) and the beneficent Supreme Being (Ralph Richardson). With tons of in-jokes, pratfalls, cameos, wondrous fantasy ideas, and Pythonesque surrealism, Time Bandits is quite lovable and inventive in ways that Gilliam’s subsequent films haven’t managed; kudos to John Cleese as a clueless Robin Hood, and David Rappaport as the leader of the pint-sized insurrectionists.

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