We’re somewhat late to the dance on this one, but I couldn’t pass it up. The 1980 Flash Gordon is one of the dumbest science fiction films ever made. It’s also one of my absolute favorites. Seriously, it’s what I call a plan-changer. One of those movies that if I’m flipping channels and it’s on, I will fucking rearrange my schedule for it. I find it strangely fascinating. Also, the outfits make me giggle uncontrollably, which is not something that happens often.
For those of you who have been living under a fucking rock that was buried in a hole that was covered by another rock, Flash Gordon is an ex-athlete (originally a polo player in the ’40s strip, updated to be an ex-football player in the 1980 film) who is rocketed into space to the planet Mongo, where he does battle with Ming the Merciless, Mongo’s ruler. There are dudes with wings (featuring Brian Blessed roaring “DIVE” in a moment that you truly have to witness to understand its sheer awesomeness) and random beautiful women and Timothy Dalton and the greatest dialogue ever written… ever and mad scientists and Queen did the soundtrack and I feel dizzy.
Also, when Dustin asked me to cover this, he said: “Flash Gordon. He’s the fast one, right?” Hand to God.
Anyway, that was all my long-winded way of telling you about Breck Eisner’s in-development Flash Gordon movie. Eisner is unfortunately currently best known for directing the McConaughey/Cruz monstrosity, Sahara, but I’m willing to give him a mulligan on it if next week’s The Crazies ends up good. What makes the story interesting is that Eisner is apparently a huge fan and he’s “been pursuing (the project) for years to try and get made,” according to Cinema Blend.
What’s particularly of interest is that Eisner apparently wants to make the film a deadly serious one, devoid of any of the camp that was rampant in the 1980 film and be a bit more loyal in tone to the older strips and serials, which were campy, but not that campy (there was also a series that was briefly on the Sci-Fi Channel, but it was so bad that even the fucking Sci-Fi Channel is embarrassed by it). Which is good news. There’s something to be said for directors who really love a project, I suppose.
In any event, we’re still a ways away from seeing Eisner’s Flash Gordon on the big screen, despite names being tossed around already to play the titular Gordon (Sam Worthington rumor has been dispelled, but of course there’s a Sam Worthington rumor about every project these days). But it could make for a pretty great tentpole flick if it’s given the right amount of love and quality writing — and budget. You don’t skimp on the budget for Flash Gordon.
I mean, he’s the Defender of the Universe, for fuck’s sake.