“Things to Come” @ FLMNH (July 7)
The Florida Museum of Natural History’s “Creative B” summer film series features entertaining science fiction films and roundtable discussions by scholars, scientists, writers, and artists.
In recognition of the 100th anniversary of the Museum’s establishment, this summer’s theme is “future history + time travel.” The series begins on July 7 with William Cameron Menzies’s 1936 film Things to Come. Based on H.G. Wells’s 1933 novel The Shape of Things to Come and a screenplay by Wells, the film famously predicted the outbreak of a Second World War in 1940. Terrible new armaments and biological weapons prolong the conflict for three decades, leaving the world in ruins and plunging the surviving population into abject barbarism. In 1970, a secret society of engineers and aviators, “Wings Over the World,” emerges. They subdue the ruling warlords and promise a new way forward to global peace and prosperity. By 2036, humanity lives in modern underground cities without fear of war and disease, and the first space launch to the Moon is planned. But a growing number of the citizens of this new utopia deny the benefits of science and fear the headlong rush of progress…
Produced by Alexander Korda and starring Raymond Massey, Ralph Richardson, Cedric Hardwicke, Pearl Argyle, and Margaretta Scott, Things to Come has been described as the first true masterpiece of science fiction film, and is justly celebrated for its landmark art and cinematic designs.
The evening’s events will begin with an open reception from 6–7 PM. The screening will be preceded and followed by a roundtable discussion featuring:
- Ian Breheny – Museum Operations Specialist at the FLMNH, and co-founder of the film series
- Joe Haldeman – Nebula Award-winning science fiction writer, author of The Forever War, Forever Peace, and the Marsbound/Starbound/Earthbound trilogy.
- Terry Harpold – Associate Professor of English, Film & Media Studies at UF
- Mark Law – Professor of Engineering, Director of the UF Honors Program
- Tim Lawrence – Special effects artist and concept sculptor
Things to Come is unrated and is suitable viewing for all audiences.
On July 14, beginning at 7 PM, the series will continue with George Pal’s film of H.G. Wells’s The Time Machine (1960).
All “Creative B” events are free and open to the public.