Man of La Mancha

Man Of La Mancha. United Artists 1972.

Before watching the movie:

I think this is the way most people have experienced¬†Don Quixote.¬† I’ve read some of the book, but despite the new translation I was using, the stilted nature of it still sometimes overpowered the comedy, which itself sometimes felt a little too much like “mental illness is funny!” It’s at the same time amazing how modern it feels at over 400 years old and yet how basic the storytelling can be at times, because it’s had 400 years to become part of the way we always tell stories.

But the grandeur of the way Man of La Mancha interprets the book is enticing and accessible. Everyone has heard at least a few bars of “The Impossible Dream”. It’s a classic showtune ballad. The romance is probably more feel-good in this take as well.

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Flash Gordon

Flash Gordon. Starling Films 1980.
Flash Gordon. Starling Films 1980.

Before watching the movie:

I’ve been wanting to see this movie ever since I learned while reviewing Highlander that Queen did music for it. That is the biggest selling point of this movie for me, and will likely be the best thing about it, even if it does turn out to be an effective update of a campy adventure serial. I’m just not sure this sort of thing can be done seriously anymore.

I was surprised to learn from the box that Flash is a football player. Some quick research showed that in the original comics, he was a polo player, so that’s not a big change. I never picked up on him being an athlete. I should probably invest more time in familiarizing myself with source material.

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