A nifty and logical time travel science fiction thriller from writer / director David Twohy, whose entire filmography as a director seems to be comprised of underrated films, The Grand Tour has an American elegiac quality to it in the way that few movies do.
A widower and his daughter host some unusual tourists at the home they’re renovating, and when he discovers that they’re from the future, things get real interesting.
After his wife is killed in a horrible road accident, welder and carpenter Ben Wilson (Jeff Daniels) and his pre-teen daughter Hillary (Ariana Richards) move to a small town and buy and begin renovating a big mansion. Soon after, before they’ve even had a real chance to begin their renovations, an odd woman (played by Marilyn Lightstone) shows up and begins poking around and demanding that Ben allow her and a bunch of tourists to stay the week in the house, throwing money at him like it’s just paper. He accepts, but with some trepidations. Over the next few days he observes how strange and unusual the “tourists” are with their almost silent communications with each other and how they behave like they seem to know that something big is on the horizon. They whisper about some impending “spectacle,” but Ben is confounded about the whole enterprise. Meanwhile, Ben is in the middle of a custody battle with his rich judge of a father-in-law who manages to get temporary custody over Hillary, and in the midst of all that, a spectacle does indeed happen in town: a meteorite crashes and destroys a big part of town, including Ben’s home and the homes and structures nearby, killing quite a few people. When the entire town is sheltered in the school gymnasium, another catastrophe occurs, killing hundreds, including Ben’s daughter. That’s when Ben realizes that the tourists are from the future and spend their amusements on traveling through time watching huge disasters from the past unfold in real time. He figures out their secret and how they get around through time and is desperate to fix the horrors that befell him and his town, but in order to do it right, he’ll need help from the only person he can trust … himself!
A nifty and logical time travel science fiction thriller from writer / director David Twohy, whose entire filmography as a director seems to be comprised of underrated films, The Grand Tour has an American elegiac quality to it in the way that few movies do. I would hesitate to call it “Spielberg-ian,” but it’s pretty close in a Ray Bradbury sort of way. Daniels gives a good, forceful performance, and the movie tells us just enough for the plot to make plenty of sense. A solid family-friendly film (it’s PG-13 with some well-placed “F”-words), this one is worth checking out.
Unearthed Classics has just released a solid Blu-ray edition of The Grand Tour, that comes with some promo material, stills, trailers, and some other minor supplements. There’s also a slipcover and a reversible sleeve. The transfer exceeds the quality of the previous DVD edition from Anchor Bay, so this one is a sure thing.