I always liked Rod Taylor. He's a strong, rugged, no-nonsense kind of guy. Every time I hear George Pal's name I immediately start to sing, "But When worlds collide, said George Pal to his bride 'I'm gonna give you some terrible thrills'" I am also slightly enamored with Yvette, though she doesn't really have a great role.
Nice to watch, but somehow no real classic. The Morlocs are of course terrible. Did Wells picture them as monsters anyhow? Guess he wanted to show that the class struggle might end that way, with the poor ones winning, and with the unproductive bourgeoisie being normal cattle, even being razed with concerns to welfare. Making a monster movie instead of scifi shows the uncertainty of the filmmakers. Very funny.
It may lack the SFX tools & budget of the remake, but this entertaining sci-fi is more thoughtful & entertaining than the 2002 film. Though it simplifies Wells' concepts & story, the effects & Taylor's performance gloss over the most obvious flaws. Those flaws are most present when Taylor's George is introduced to the Eloi. They try to communicate apathy & conditioning but come across as idiotic & naive.
One oft he few times when the mobilisation of all available Hollywood trickery really resulted in something like movie-magic. The antiquated physicality of the FX only plays to their charms. Rod Taylor proves to be an adequate emotional performer, but he demonstrates great physical presence.