Coming Soon to Innerspace: The Time Machine

While this week’s post is not necessarily musical, it is perhaps my most exciting post to date, and I’m confident that many of my readers will share in my exhilaration.

2016 has been a monumentally nostalgic year, likely due to my age and as a bit of reactionary escapism from the seemingly endless barrage of tragedies which have befallen us this year. More so than ever before, I’ve been transforming my home into a palace of beloved objets d’art and memories of wonderful moments from decades (or even centuries) past. My reading has been largely cultural criticism, political revolutionary texts, and music manifestoes from my favorite periods in history, and similarly, my cinematic explorations have been a journey through cult classics from the silver screen to the present.

One classic film has always remained close to my heart – the 1960 film adaptation of H.G. Wells’ The Time Machine. My father shared the film with me via a VHS copy he taped from a broadcast on AMC in the 1980s. I was captured by the regal Victorian style of the time traveler’s home. I quickly adopted red velvet draperies, antique wood furniture, and fringe-shaded oil lamps for my own personal style, and have been refining that decor for 20 years.

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In 2012 a rosewood Denon DP-60L vintage turntable became my pièce de résistance. 

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And in 2013, the film resurfaced in my life when I purchased a 1971 painting by a local artist celebrating the movie. It had been acquired directly by a reseller and comic collector when it was painted but was never owned or displayed until my discovery of the piece forty years later. And as luck would have it, there was an ornate decorative Victorian style frame its exact size sitting a few feet away in the same shop. I didn’t hesitate for a moment and took them both home.

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So when nostalgia crept back into my mind this winter, I went back to that fateful film and the fantastic journey of the time traveler. I began scouring eBay, Amazon, and other marketplaces for a brilliant piece of official merchandise to celebrate the film in my own home. I quickly discovered that there is actually very little in the way of official merch for this magnificent film. A seller on Amazon offers a low-res bootleg print of the theatrical poster, but a genuine copy will set you back $600 and there is nothing offered in between.

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But it was off the beaten path that I found the greatest treasure any Time Machine devotee could ask for. While there are two independently-engineered advanced model kits available in the $200 dollar range, both are far beyond my level of ability to assemble and paint. However, on a humble website named timemachinemodels.com, a gentleman designs and handcrafts several working models of the Machine with varying levels of complexity. His latest design is absolutely breathtaking, and he offered to build one for me once he’s settled into his new home.

The latest model, based on the design of the full-scale Machine has a solid walnut base, brass rails and ornaments, and velvet seat cushions. The dish is turned with a new style motor that is built into the hub of the dish and eliminates the need for an external bearing wheel, providing a smoother and quieter operation. The control lever which activates the motor and lights is removable and comes in its own tiny display box.

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And better still – The Invention is available in The Tantalus Box from the film to truly showcase the piece properly.

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Here is The Time Machine in action. (All images and video are property of TimeMachineModels.com.)

The project is estimated to take twelve weeks to craft from start to finish and will be a splendid tribute to the memory of my late father’s initiating me into the world of science fiction all those years ago.

But wait! I do have a musical connection to close this feature after all! In anticipation of the project, I’ve ordered an original pressing of the dramatic score to The Time Machine!

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[EDIT – UPDATE!] The original film poster inspired me to design a monochrome t-shirt of the graphic. My custom tee arrived recently in the post –

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These are indeed exciting times. Happy new year everyone.

Published in: on December 30, 2016 at 6:40 pm  Leave a Comment  
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