Thrill Seekers (film)
|Directed by||Mario Azzopardi|
|Written by||Kurt Inderbitzin
|Starring||Casper Van Dien
|Music by||Fred Mollin|
|Release date(s)||October 17, 1999|
Thrill Seekers (also known as "The Time Shifters") is a 1999 science fiction movie featuring Casper Van Dien, Catherine Bell, Julian Richings and Martin Sheen, among others. The film aired on October 17, 1999 on TBS.
Tom Merrick (Van Dien) works as a TV reporter when he's nearly killed in an accident while informing about a fire in the Evanston power plant. After directing his crew to take another position he spots a creepy-looking man (Richings), causing him to stay behind. This accidentally saves his life as the crew is killed in the partial collapse of a building.
After some time, he decides to do some research on catastrophes for a documentary he's preparing when he accidentally stumbles upon several pictures of the man he saw at the power plant, who appears to turn up in different disasters (sinking of Titanic, Hindenburg disaster and hurricane Hugo) as far apart as 50 years, but who still looks the same in all the pictures.
As his boss Eleanor hopes for a good story she books Merrick a flight to Washington, D.C. to get the original photographs from the author. When on the plane, he again spots the man from the power plant disaster and checks his luggage. He finds a flyer and discovers a futuristic enterprise—Thrill Seekers—will make time travel possible in the year 2070 and will sell trips to the past. These trips consist of travellers going straight to a catastrophe right before it happens, so they can experience the emotion but are able to travel back in time again before they get killed. Which is worse, Merrick finds out that the Flight 222 he is on will be involved in a mid-air collision, killing everyone on board.
Thanks to that knowledge, Merrick forces the pilots to change the course of action which saves a plane from crashing and killing hundreds of people. The mysterious man disappears before landing. Merrick is arrested by the FBI with the charge of plane hijacking attempt. Agent Baker is sure about the hijacking attempt while his younger assistant, Agent Stanton believes Merrick's story. However, Merrick's knowledge of the future disasters causes the changes in the future so the company Thrill Seekers sends two agents to the past to stop Merrick.
Merrick contacts Elizabeth, his colleague, to help him. They head to the Chicago subway where the next catastrophe is going to take place according to the recovered itinerary from the future. They again spot the man from the previous events and board the same train. This time Merrick confronts the man and takes his time-travel device disguised as a book. The engineer suffers a cardiac arrest and the train is accelerating uncontrollably. Merrick manages to disconnect locomotive from the rest of the train, but the time traveller stays inside the locomotive and is killed in the crash.
When checking the time-travelling device, Merrick finds another catastrophe - a Copps Coliseum fire where 11,000 people is about to die in the next day. Merrick's ex-wife and his son plan to go there to attend a hockey game. He tries to convince them not to go there, but without success. He informs FBI about the coming disaster instead and takes a ride to reach the stadium in time. This time FBI believes him and the firefighters are dispatched to the scene. They manage to put down the fire in the restaurant inside the stadium which was probable cause of the disaster.
Meanwhile, the Thrill Seekers' agents are informed that the prevention of disasters had a huge impact on the future events. Agent Cortez lost a whole family in a fusion reactor meltdown because one of the passengers from the Flight 222 invented fusion power and the agents are unable to return because one of the surviving passengers killed the inventor of the time travel device in a car crash. The only way to change that is to make sure that Copps Coliseum fire will happen anyway and then travel to the past to prevent Merrick from getting involved.
The agents pursue Merrick and blow up Merrick's car with Elisabeth in it. After that they go to the stadium and plant multiple explosive devices which detonate before Merrick gets there. He is unable to prevent the death of his ex-wife and son. Merrick uses a captured time-travel device and returns to the time before the fire. He manages to avoid the agents and stops them to detonate all explosives, saving many lives. As the Thrill Seekers agents try to escape they are buried under the rubble as some explosives go off. One of the agents recognizes FBI agent Stanton as the inventor of the time machine and tells him he shouldn't invent it. Merrick, his ex-wife and the son survive the accident while a group of time travellers watch the scene.
- Casper Van Dien ... Tom Merrick
- Catherine Bell ... Elizabeth Wintern
- Theresa Saldana ... Cortez
- Peter Outerbridge ... Felder
- Julian Richings ... Murray Trevor, Time-Traveling Tourist
- Lawrence Dane ... FBI Agent Baker
- Yana Doorman ... FBI Agent Connor
- Catherine Oxenberg ... Thrill Seekers Spokesperson (as Catherine Van Dien)
- Mimi Kuzyk ... Eleanor Grayson
- "Internet Movie Database - The Time Shifters (1999 TV Movie) - Filming Locations". Retrieved 2014-07-03.