Arrow Releases Time-Travel Thriller 12 Monkeys on Blu-ray Steelbook

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12 Monkeys Steelbook Arrow

There are a few different theories of time travel that fit into fiction. The first is that the past can't be changed. The second is that changing the past creates an alternate timeline. The third is like the first, but with the twist that whatever you change in the past is what causes the present problem you initially went back to fix.

That's the trope that defines the framework of Terry Gilliam's 12 Monkeys, the dystopian thriller starring Bruce Willis as James Cole, a prisoner in a future timeline ravaged by a virus that devastated the human population. He volunteers for a project involving time travel so that his keepers can get a pure version of the virus with the intent of using it to develop a cure. But there's a cost that comes with time travel, a toll taken on the mind of the traveler. Jame arrives in the early 1990s and is soon hospitalized as a mental patient, where he makes the acquaintance of Jeffrey Goines (Brad Pitt), a mentally disturbed son of a powerful virologist, setting in motion an unstoppable chain of events.

Unlike most time travel stories, 12 Monkeys sees Cole jumping around to different points in time, creating a mosaic of events that lay the groundwork for Cole to eventually convince the psychiatrist assigned to his case, Kathryn Railly (Madeleine Stowe) that he's telling the truth, bringing her to his aid to seek out and stop the elusive Army of the 12 Monkeys that eventually releases the virus James is trying to stop. Look for a guest appearance by Batman fan-favorite Frank Gorshin as Railly's superior, Dr. Fletcher.

This Blu-ray release from Arrow comes in a hinged steelbook, featuring an image of Willis in his protective suit, spot glossed on the visor to make it reflective. Additionally, there is a host of special features with multiple takes on the behind the scenes of making this film. In Arrow tradition, this release also comes with a handsome booklet including a Q&A with director Terry Gilliam.

Grade: 
4.0 / 5.0