I watched this next one on HBO, almost as much as “The Beastmaster.”
It was probably my first experience with science fiction.
My first, definitely not “the best,” but it was still very memorable for me. A big part of it was the bright colors and “enormity” that Mike Hodges decided to use for the sets and costumes.
It’s a movie whose theme song was written and performed by Queen, and has a supporting role from the most underrated James Bond ever. Need I say more?
As always, of course I do…
“Flash Gordon” was one of those movies that I watched with my cousins more than five times. Even at four years old I knew it was a corny movie, but we enjoyed it regardless, I think because of the scope of the action. We used to act out the scenes in our back yard with our toy guns…I was the youngest. That meant I had to be Ming the Merciless.
Pretty easy to kick a four-year-old’s ass at pretend fighting “Flash Gordon” style.
I watched “Ted” when it came out and was pleasantly surprised that Seth MacFarlane chose “Flash Gordon” as the movie of John’s (Mark Wahlberg) childhood that made the most impact on him and Ted (voiced by MacFarlane). Watching their interaction with the real Sam J. Jones (Flash Gordon) was very amusing. It also refreshed some of the memories that I have of the film.
Outside of Queen and Timothy Dalton, the key scenes I remember are Flash almost getting eaten by a very green plant type monster, the feat of strength where you put your hand in the base of a shrub and hope that a random little critter doesn’t poison your arm causing the need for amputation, and of course; the “hawk people.”
Looking back on some of the dialogue for a quote, it was hard not to laugh…so I did laugh a little. It doesn’t work on just paper, but for some odd reason, as fantastic as the world is, the campy dialogue when presented the way it is, works on this movie…if you’re 4 to 8 years old.
I was visiting my parents a while back before my dad passed. We were flipping through the channels on DirecTV and came upon “Flash Gordon” right before Flash and the “hawk people’s” assault on Ming. We had to finish the movie and I had a smile on my face like I was 4 years old again.
One of the great memories I hope I never lose being that it was close to one of the last times I would see my father.
Another example of how movies can be so powerful…when you allow them.