Before the arrival of CGI Sci-Fi epics were few and far between, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t exist.

IO9 just alerted me that one of my favorites, the HG Wells classic “Things to Come” has slipped into the public domain, making it free for us all to watch and own (or you can watch it on YouTube).

The film basically begins with the dawn of World War II, but in this version it goes straight through to 1980, reducing the world to a bombed out husk, the remaining humans scratching out a subsistence living under cruel overlords. But something new, and more noble, is rising from the ashes…

Full of pseudo-Randian posturing with Raymond Massey delivering the kind of speechifying that only a man who has played Lincoln and been in The Fountainhead can do, this is a classic science fiction story, with some pretty incredible special effects for its day.

Have you ever seen it? Are you still willing to watch a black and white classic, even if we didn’t end up that particular future?

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