My Science Project (1985)

When I saw this movie, way back when I was 13 years old, I wondered when every other kid would embrace it and treat it like the blockbuster I was sure that it would be. Then, it never happened.

In 1957, President Dwight D. Eisenhower is brought to Area 51 in the middle of the night to see a UFO. He orders them to get rid of it. 

28 years later, it’s found by high school gearhead Michael Harlan (Christine), who is searching through an airplane graveyard for something to turn in for his final science project so he can graduate. He’s brought along Ellie (Danielle von Zerneck, La Bamba), his nerdy friend who wants to be his girlfriend, and along with her and his friend Vince (Fischer Stevens, not playing an Indian as he did in Short Circuit or a Hollywood style hacker as he did as Eugene “The Plague” Belford in Hackers) he has to figure out how the device works and how to not destroy the world.

Hippie science teacher Dr. Roberts (Dennis Hopper, in one of his first mainstream return roles) realizes that the gizmo is actually a portal to another dimension before he is teleported away. The machine goes out of control, helped by the meddling of jealous nerd Sherman (Raphael Sbarge).

All ends up well and good, despite a dinosaur attack, post-apocalyptic mutants attacking the school and the police searching for our heroes. Dr. Roberts even comes back, getting to see Woodstock one more time (Dennis Hopper is wearing the same outfit he wore in Easy Rider). Our hero gets an A and the girl. All is well.

Known as TimeBusters in Sweden, this is an 80’s film about time travel. And no, it’s not Back to the Future. It’s interesting, though. And pretty much forgotten. It’s worth revisiting.

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