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The Man From Earth 2007

Amazon Video

(157) IMDb 8/10

An impromptu goodbye party for a professor turns into an interrogation when he reveals he's actually an immortal who has walked the planet for 14,000 years. When professor John Oldman (David Lee Smith) suddenly resigns his post and announces he's moving away, his colleagues turn up for a farewell party.

David Lee Smith, Tony Todd
1 hour, 27 minutes

Product Details

Genres Fantasy, Science Fiction
Director Richard Schenkman
Starring David Lee Smith, Tony Todd
Supporting actors John Billingsley, Ellen Crawford, Annika Peterson, William Katt, Alexis Thorpe, Richard Riehle, Steven Littles, Chase Sprague, Robbie Bryan
Studio Starz Digital Media
BBFC rating Parental Guidance

Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

39 of 43 people found the following review helpful By J. Ritchie on 26 Sept. 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The Man From Earth is classic Sci-Fi made into a film. It's all about the idea of a man who never dies, living 14,000 years and finally telling his friends who he is before he moves on to his next fake life. During the film many aspects of being ancient are explored; memories, relationships, religion, meeting great people, being somewhere else when big events happen.

The whole thing takes place in a one room cabin and it's just a bunch of people talking - but is the main character just making it all up or telling the truth, at least as he sees it?

Not only does Christianity feature large in this film, but the concept of watching your children die of old age in front of you makes for compelling viewing. All the mysteries that man is drawn too are examined.

It's a simple storyline, with believable acting, and it hangs together brilliantly, with the film dealing with all the objections that people would make to the idea of one man living forever.

This is a film for all adults, a cold night with a real fire, a mug of hot chocolate and you've got 90 minutes of enjoyment to look forward to.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Stephen E Andrews TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 15 Sept. 2013
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
A number of reviewers here have made the point that while this story would work as a play (they are right), as a film this is unexciting. I'd agree with this in essence, but I'd also say that SF is about ideas and this is why it's so hard to make good ideas-based SF - cinema is good at visuals, but not so strong on ideas, so dialogue or voiceover has to provide this element in stories where effects cannot illustrate the ideas.

As a serious SF enthusiast, I found the film refreshing in its basic drama and low-key approach. However, it is obvious that the form this idea would work best in is the short story. For anyone looking for an interesting work of humanist SF to divert them for 85 minutes, it's worth seeing, but this is not a massively exciting tale for anyone well read in the genre. These kind of shaggy god stories have been old hat for a long time...

The picture quality of the DVd is overall quite appalling - the first 20 minutes or so are passable, then the whole thing becomes shrouded in grain, fog and...well, it just looks terrible. Such poor standards of mastering are unacceptable, I'm afraid.

The extras are also a massive disappointment. Instead of providing in-depth information about writer Jerome Bixby's place as a genre author (he edited an SF magazine at one time and wrote some prose SF), we simply get brief anecdoates from the cast about how they encountered Bixby's work on an episode of 'Star Trek' and a 'Twilight Zone' show based on his best known story, plus tales of how most of them ended up playing guest roles in later incarnations of 'STar Trek'. Bixby's (arguably) more significant and influential work on the screenplay 'It! The Terror from Beyond Space' (a film said to have inspired 'Alien', which 'It!
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33 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Withnail67 on 7 July 2008
Format: DVD Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Jerome Bixby was a scriptwriter of some of the strongest episodes of the original Star Trek and Twilight Zone television series and this film is very much in the same vein. John Oldman is a senior lecturer at a California university who is moving on and refuses to tell his colleagues where. At his goodbye party, he makes the astounding confession that he is in fact a late Cro-Magnon man, born with the ability to continually regenerate, and who has witnessed the whole of human history in his 14,000 year lifetime. His revelations over one long evening shake his colleague's beliefs and perceptions to the core.

This film is certainly unusual, and bears all the hallmarks of a labour of love. The budget is obviously minuscule, but the cast to their spirited best with a very unusual script and a very limited locale. The performances are generally sound, with some less than impressive, it has to be said.

The central concept has been explored not only by Bixby in his Star Trek script Requiem for Methuselah, but in stories like Clifford Simak's 1980 Hugo award winning short story `The Grotto of the Dancing Deer'. The fact that Oldman was, in fact, a very significant historical and religious personage pushes the plot further than it really needs to go. The point it makes about this `religious personage' is an entirely valid one, but I'm not sure it needed to be made here, and it is the central weakness of the film.

A quirky watch, probably best rented rather than bought, a touching tribute to a talented scriptwriter of the golden age of TV SF, and a pleasant example of a SF film trying to drive itself forward with ideas rather than special effects.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By ant on 20 April 2012
Format: DVD
When this film started I thought I'd bought a TV movie by mistake. The action started straight away without any dramatic opening music or fancy graphics, the picture looked rather grainy and colourless, and the sound quality of the dialogue was poor - some people sounded close-miked, others more distant, and the acoustics changed almost sentence by sentence, as though it had been recorded in several different places at different times.

After a while, however, these issues became less noticeable as I began to get drawn in by the script. The fact that I kept watching even though almost the entire action (or inaction) took place in one room is a testament to the ingenuity of the writing. There was a wide range of discussion centring around the nature of proof, of interpretation and alteration of historical facts, of religion(s), and of the rise and fall of civilisations. It's refreshing to watch a film which is entirely devoid of the stock Hollywood sound effects, car chases and fist fights, but this was also a Science Fiction film devoid of any Special Effects whatsoever - very brave! The only other slight niggle was the main character's slightly over-saintly demeanour, though that was presumably to fit in with part of the plot which I shall not reveal but you may have read in other reviews.

Overall though, well worth a look.

PS I do think the cover picture on the DVD is rather misleading, as there is no image like that in the film itself, and it does imply that it's more of a Star Trek type Special Effects film.
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