“Blast from the Past” (film)

My wife and I one recent evening felt like watching a movie, and she loves romantic comedies and I had a list from the February 23, 2009, National Review of the “25 best conservative movies of the last 25 years.”  And so we rented Blast from the Past for 79 cents.

That 79 cents turned out to be a great entertainment investment.  Now, let me make clear at the outset that, while NR correctly listed the film as conservative, it is also apolitical.  Its conservatism is all cultural.

What happens in this 1999 movie is this:  In 1962, a brilliant but eccentric scientist (Christopher Walken) and his pregnant wife (Sissy Spacek), mistakenly believing that a nuclear war is imminent, flee to their backyard bomb shelter and don’t emerge until 35 years later.  Their son (Brendan Fraser) is sent out into the world to find supplies — and he also finds love (Alicia Silverstone).

What drives the film is the reaction of the protagonist to the brave new world he finds, and of course the brave new world’s reaction to him.  Much of this is comedic, but there is a serious undertone:  His character/values/morality are clearly superior — and recognized as such — by everyone in the movie.

And they are “conservative”:  He is a dutiful son (with good parents), a manly gentleman who treats women well (and other men, too).  And he is an unabashed Believer.

So if you have the chance, and 79 cents to spare, I recommend you watch Blast from the Past.


The first names of the leading characters are interesting, by the way:  The couple falling in love are Adam and Eve, Adam’s parents are Calvin and Helen, and Eve’s brother is Troy.  Lots of Jerusalem and Athens.  You can find a link to the script here: [link: https://sfy.ru/?script=blast_from_the_past ].


I’ll end by noting that, to me, the most moving scene is when Adam for the first time sees the Pacific Ocean, and he is simply overcome by its beauty and power. You can watch it here: [link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F–7DEp26Qo ].  In a scene soon after that, Adam, who is sitting out in the rain, watches the drops hit the palm of his hand, and says, “You know, my father — who is a scientist — says that everything is a miracle.  Everything.  Until recently I wasn’t sure what he meant by that.”