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The Time Machine (Classic Radio Sci-Fi) Audio CD – Audiobook, 6 Aug 2009

4.1 out of 5 stars 52 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Audiobook, 6 Aug 2009
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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: BBC Physical Audio; Unabridged edition (6 Aug. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1408409720
  • ISBN-13: 978-1408409725
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 25.4 x 14 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 193,869 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

H. G. Wells is widely regarded as being one of the fathers of science fiction. Among his most famous 'scientific romances' (as Wells called them) are "The Time Machine" (1895), "The Island of Dr Moreau" (1896), "The Invisible Man" (1897) and "The War of the Worlds" (1898). These SF works contained many pioneering ideas and were hugely influential in shaping other authors' visions of the future. In later life Wells abandoned science fiction in favour of social and comic novels such as "Kipps" (1905), "Tono-Bungay" (1909) and "The History of Mr Polly" (1910). Wells died in 1946, aged 80.


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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Glenn Cook HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 20 April 2012
The BBC Audio badge on the cover gives the first indication that this Radio Drama, first broadcast in February, 2009, will be something special and that view is confirmed when you hear the Radio show on this 2 disc CD set.
It lasts 1 hour and 40 minutes and does not overstay its welcome one iota- indeed the play could have so easily been padded out. The CD was a welcome companion on a 2hour return journey

Now the book was great- written by Well's in his early 20s and published back in January to May 1895.
The theme of time travel in this form has been copied many times indeed I believe Dr Who is a child of H G Wells in that he is an inheritor of the type of book Wells originated.

Now the problem with the play is that quite a lot of the story needs to be visualised.
Bear with me on this- in the film of the book the effect of travelling through Time was cleverly conveyed via a manikin in a ladies clothing shop opposite the Time Traveller's laboratory. The clothes dictated by fashion would constantly change with the fashions of the Times.

In this radio play Philip Osment has had to go back to the drawing board in writing a credible script.
The Time Traveller travels alone unlike say Dr Who so there is no interplay of the Time Traveller having to explain his actions and views to a companion.
Like a typical example of dialogue How doe this thing work Dr? Oh I see like a jazzed up can opener... and the like.
But Weena does not speak English so Osment has used a clever plot twist of her learning English and The Traveller learning Eloi.
The old Twinkle Twinkle Little Star was a very clever and charming device in the story. Far fetched? Not quite.
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Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
H G Well's `The Time Machine' is a well deserved science fiction classic. It was a forward thinking book for its time that introduced ideas on socialism and democracy within a science fiction setting. I have read the book and I loved it, therefore a radio play on the book should have suited me. The BBC are excellent at producing radio plays and the quality shines through once more. The voice acting is strong, especially Robert Glenister as the Traveller. I also really liked the ambient sounds that paint an aural picture of you of a far off future. The use of language for the Eloi is a little strange, but is in keeping with the time the novel was written.

So what was the problem with the CD? One issue is with the book itself. `The Time Machine' is a book of its time and it does feel very dated and a little strange when the Traveller s falls for the child like woman - I have always been a little uncomfortable about this. The biggest issue is with this particular adaptation. The BBC have added an additional layer of the older Wells narrating the book. This causes two problems; he claims that his book was real and that he was there, he then dictates the entire tale once again to a woman who has already read the book - why, if she already knows what happens? Secondly, the CD ends up being about an old man talking about himself as a younger man, who in turn is talking about another man, who in turn is using a recording device - 4 layers of narration, when 2 would have done!

For someone who has not read the original text this may not prove an issue, but for me it made this adaptation overly complex. The quality of drama and recording is exceptionally high, the CD cover art is nostalgic and fun, and the accompanying notes are informative. However, none of these can make up for someone trying to rewrite something that was already good enough in its original form.
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Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
A BBC Radio 3 full-cast dramatisation of H. G. Wells' pioneering science fiction adventure. Wells' thrilling story of an inventor who travels in time and discovers a nightmarish dystopian future has been adapted several times for TV and film. This first ever UK radio adaptation, starring Robert Glenister as the Time Traveller and William Gaunt as H. G. Wells, brings Wells' fascinating ideas and extraordinary visions to vivid life.

It opens in 1943, when Wells is recording a talk for the Home Service in which he questions mankind's future. After the broadcast, he spends the evening with American journalist Martha, and tells her the astonishing news that his bestselling book The Time Machine was not fantasy but fact.

Wells explains that he was actually present at the dinner party in Richmond fifty years earlier, when the Time Traveller returned from his first fateful journey into the future. He reveals to Martha the full story of the Time Traveller's encounter with the Eloi and the Morlocks - and what really happened to him afterwards...

Don't be put off by the cartoonish cover, this is an intelligent and absorbing radio play, with a top-notch cast and high-quality production values.
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Verified Purchase
Being very familiar with the book I awaited this CD with eager anticipation.
I wasn't disappointed.

I accept that film and radio always feel the need with author's works to adapt them sometimes disastrously.

This time I feel that all was really very good.

Excellent acting in the typical British way redolent of the relevant time period made much sense.

Two things stand out for me - One, the poignant addition of the song Twinkle, twinkle little star, not mentioned in the book but a brilliant and insightful insert; and Two, the moving to the very last place in the story of the time traveller's journey to the end of man and of the world and of the return of this knowledge in the prototype by the time traveller who, we hope finds his Weena.
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