After the dramatic success of Star Wars in 1977, a number of space opera films and series were made that had different quality levels, but of course None appeared on the level of Star Wars. Among these works, one of the titles that probably had more legitimacy to be made than any other Film was Flash Gordon in 1980.
The reason is that George Lucas originally intended to adapt Make a movie about Flash Gordon, because he was a big fan of the Flash Gordon TV series as a child, and if you read or watch Flash Gordon's early works, you will see how much Lucas's visual imagination in building Star Wars (especially the episode) 4) It was impressive, but Dino De Laurentis, the well-known Italian producer who had the rights to make the film, refused to sell it to Lucas, so Lucas decided to make his own Flash Gordon. Think about how the history of popular culture would have changed if Lucas had been allowed to make Flash Gordon. Thinking about some of these "what if" scenarios? Intelligence is taken away from a person.
Flash Gordon is somehow the connecting point of two great and popular currents in popular culture: superhero comics and space opera. The character first appeared in 1934 as a weekly comic strip published in a newspaper. Flash Gordon, the creator of Flash Gordon, initially designed it as a rival to the popular science fiction hero of the day, Buck Rogers, but it was not long before Flash Gordon found his identity and, over time, became very popular. More than Buck Rogers.
Flash Gordon as a prototype for superhero comics it counts. Of course, its overall style is more like Pulp Fiction, like the stories of John Carter of Mars and Buck Rogers, and Superman is still the first comic book in which the superhero, as we know him today, is defined, but the power Gordon's many flashes, his courage and skill in defeating enemies, his symbolic costume and appearance, as well as his heroic nature and role as a savior all promised heroic literature.
- Superman Film Criticism (1978); Founder of the Superhero cinema Tradition
- Superman Movie Criticism 2 (1980): Superman Continues to Lead in cinema
Flash Gordon in 1980 is the only feature Film to date and It also remains the largest adaptation of the comic strip. The Film was supposed to have a sequel, but due to its disappointing box office performance (with the exception of England and Italy, of course, in which the Film was a success) as well as the fight between Flash actor Sam J. Jones and Dino de Laurentiis's salary and his departure from the project before it was completed (which led to Dublor voicing his dialogues), the sequel project for it was canceled.
Flash Gordon is almost forgotten these days among the masses of people who do not actively pursue popular culture, and despite all the works that inspired them, failed to achieve a lasting franchise with a high audience attraction. Become. The biggest reason for this lack of durability goes back to Flash's character. The championship Flash is very useless (or so-called English Bland). If you read the early Flash Gordon comics, it tastes bad. He is the most clichd image of the hero's archetype, and if you replace his name with "hero of the story", it probably won't make any difference. In fact, de Laurentiis was keen for Kurt Russell to play the role of Flash in the film, but he turned it down because of the character's shallow and insignificant nature. At first glance, it may seem that he was raising or lowering himself, but if you read the comic strips, you will find that no one can present Flash Gordon as an engaging and engaging character unless he redefines it. Slow.
In this movie Sam J. Jones does not perform badly in the role of Flash, but the problem is that his plausible play does not solve the problem of the one-dimensional character of Flash. Flash was the main polo player in the comic strip, but in this Film his specialty has been changed to American football quarterback. His quarterback is probably one of his most recognizable features. In the film's first action scene, an elliptical ball resembles an American football-shaped ball, and like a real quarterback between a flood of Ming the Merciless bodyguards, the main villain of the Film runs and knocks them down, while Dale Arden, He cheers for her from the side like a scout or cheerleader. This is probably the film's "Flash Gordonian" scene. Flash Gordon, Dale Arden and Hans Zukov are transported to the planet Mango to save Earth. There, Ming Sangdel, who is a very lustful person, sees Dale Arden and decides to add him to his harem as his wife. Flash Gordon, who is himself interested in Dale Arden, resists this decision and clashes with Ming forces, but Princess Aura, Ming's seductive daughter, becomes interested in Flash and saves her life. During the fights and chases, Flash finds out that the various imaginary races ruled by Ming (for example, winged men or sweet men who are not in the film) are all thirsty for Ming's blood because of his cruelty and are waiting for an opportunity to overthrow him. . Flash Ming enmity with Ming to save Dale Arden provides a good opportunity for the Ming-dominated races to revolt against him.
All of the events that were defined, and almost all of the characters mentioned, were fixed in the first few gordons of Flash Gordon in 1934, and in that sense the Film adheres to the original spirit of the comic. If you are a fan of Flash Gordon (although I do not know Flash Flash Gordon is a fan in Iran), this movie will not seem like a betrayal in any way. Offer the deep, even subcutaneously or accessibly. The deepest concept that can be deduced from the story is the confrontation between libertarianism and tyranny.
Ming Sangdel A combination of authoritarian and glorious Asian rulers of the past (in the words of Will Durant Oriental Despotism) and modern fascist dictators is hidden by the police. In fact, in one of the parts of the Film where Ming's agents are erasing Zhukov's memory, an image of Hitler is seen in his memoirs, and Ming's supporters and gang are told about Hitler, how much potential he had. The Ming Dynasty is depicted as a combination of the court of the Chinese emperors and the Achaemenid kings, in which ceremonies of reverence for the Ming's person speak first and last, and the rulers of the Ming Dynasties regularly appear before the Ming to rule him. Respect yourself.
Ming symbolizes almost everything that contradicts the American spirit. In this sense, Flash Gordon, as the most American person possible (his unhealthiness is a quarterback!), Shatters his bowl and thus shows the superiority of the American way. In fact, in the main comic strip there was a special emphasis on referring to the skin color of people (for example, Flash and Zhukov were referred to as white, Ming and his subordinates were yellow, with a appearance similar to the Chinese and the brown race of dwarfs or dwarfs were also present in the story That their skin color was used against them) and racist interpretations could be made of it, but these interpretations and reliance on the skin color of the people are absent in the film.
Unlike Superman 1 and 2, which were somehow an attempt to take superhero cinema away from the roots of the camp and its comedy (though not completely), Flash Gordon is proud of these roots. Returns. However, the screenwriter is none other than Lorenzo Semple Jr., one of the writers of the Batman series in the 1960s, who was the god of the camp. In this respect, the tone of the Film is somewhat different from Flash Gordon comics, because these strips were devoid of humor and Flash Gordon was a very serious person. But I think this element of seriousness in the main comic strips was a weakness, not a strength, and it made these strips look very dry, while in the Film being a camp element makes the Film somewhat attractive.
Of course, Flash Gordon It makes interesting use of the camp element, with each character and actor having a different degree of camp. For example, Timothy Dalton as Prince Barin plays his role quite seriously, while Brian Blessed as Prince Vultan presents the greatest and most compelling play possible (though Get to know Brian Blessed, you know (this is not a bad thing at all), and Max Von Sydow as Ming is the middle ground between being serious and being a camp. This diverse combination responds strangely and makes the Film atmosphere lively and fresh, and the extraterrestrial atmosphere and alienation of the mango and its inhabitants become more and more visible.
Gordon Flash starts relatively slowly and is not very exciting. But as soon as Flash, Dale Arden, and Zhukov enter the mango, the Film turns out to be its biggest winner: Amazing scene design and makeup (especially for Ming, who does not mess with Ming in the comic). The film's colorful and magnificent court has been reconstructed with such a degree of splendor that I first realized that there was a great deal of talent behind its design, and later, when I researched the subject, I saw that the person was none other than Danilo Donati. , A well-known Italian costume and stage designer who had previously worked on the films of Federico Fellini and Pier Paolo Pasolini.
He wants to put his ideas into action. His sphere of authority was so strong that it was even beyond the sphere of director Mike Hodges. Donati did not read the script, nor did he speak English, and in this respect he had problems communicating with the actors in the Film and was bothered by the costumes he had designed for some of the actors; Like the Hawkmen costume, which made the actors who wore it unable to sit during breaks and had to lie on their stomachs. However, despite all the problems, Donut's effort paid off for the film, and Flash Gordon turned out to be a visually stunning film.
The fact that Fellini's costume designer came and worked on a superhero Film was something that could only happen in the 1980s, and we have to thank Laurentiis for taking the risk. Accept. It is unlikely that the planet Mango will ever be reconstructed so beautifully on the silver screen.
Of course, the intense colors of the Film may not be to everyone's liking. In fact, one of the speculations about the film's failure is that Star Wars three years ago, with its predominantly monochromatic color scheme, changed people's visual tastes, so viewers could not relate to Gordon's Flash visual style, but only if it was a colorful film. With a glamorous stage design and exotic yet stylish outfits, Gordon Flash is a perfect visual candy.
Another surprising thing about the Film is that the Queen band - voiced by Mercury - made the main theme. Flash Gordon is perhaps the first Film for which a famous rock band made their own music. I have a dual sense of Queen's music in this film. On the one hand, the main theme of the Film is a basic earworm, and two or three times when you hear it, it anchors in your brain. But on the other hand, whenever this music is played in the film, it distracts one from the scene and draws attention to oneself. In other words, being "Quinn" is too much of a song, and instead of being a complement to the film, it casts a shadow over it. Imagine and think deeply about the political/social/economic aspects and so on. You could turn off your brain and just enjoy the heroic fantasy adventures that you could 100% believe were good and manipulative. This style of storytelling may no longer work these days, and we as an audience may be looking for more complex, deeper, and thoughtful works - even between superhero and space opera - but Flash Gordon is for those who crave the magic of popular cinema of the seventies and eighties. Remains a spectacular work.
Gordon Flash movie credentials
Director: Mike Hodges
Actors : Sam Jay . Jones, Brian Blessed, Max Won Saido, Melody Anderson, Timothy Dalton
Synopsis: Flash Gordon and Dale Arden inadvertently board Dr. Zukov's space rocket and take them to the alien planet Mango. The planet is ruled by a ruthless Ming who rules over its inhabitants with an iron fist, and when he sees Dale Arden, Flash's mistress, he tries to add her to his harem, but Flash is not the one who so easily conquers his mistress. Slow.
imdb to movie rating: 6.5 out of 10
metacritic rating: 58 out of 100
Tags: flash, gordon, film, criticism, (1980);, heartwarming, legacy, magic, eighties, cinema