Robb Pratt has worked on some amazing projects like Pocahontas, Fantasia 2000, Hercules, and Kim Possible, so it is no surprise that he has some kickass animating skills. Recently he released an animated short about one of my favorite cult classics, Flash Gordon!
Flash Gordon is one of the first sci-fi movies I remember watching as a kid. The movie’s plot is basically this: Ming the Merciless, self-declared emperor of the universe, is set on destroying the earth. His plans are disrupted by New York Jets football star Flash Gordon who accidentally ended up on Ming’s planet, Mongo, when his plane crash lands in the backyard of Dr. Zarkov who kidnaps Flash and a journalist named Dale Arden in his rocket. With me so far?
Ming decides to brainwash Dr. Zarkov, turn Dale into a pleasure slave, and kill Flash, but as luck would have it, Ming’s daughter, Princess Aura, gets the hots for Flash and helps him escape. A race of flying hawkmen, a prince with a stump full of scorpions, Ming’s sudden decision to marry Dale and make her an honest pleasure slave, and one almighty laser beam ring later, Flash saves the day and everyone heads home to earth. there is of course the question of the sequel that was hinted at in the end of the movie and according to Wikipedia: “Since 2015, a new Flash Gordon film is in the works. 20th Century Fox hired JD Payne and Patrick McKay as screenwriters, while Matthew Vaughn was in talks to direct.” so perhaps we may see more Flash films very soon.
The 1980’s film is a cult classic for a reason. The effects were cheesey, Prince Barin was more badass than Flash Gordon, the main scientist, Dr. Zarkov, looked like Dr. Krieger from Archer…
and oh god those lines…those terrible lines…
Kala: We’re going to empty your memory as we might empty your pockets… Doctor.
Dr. Hans Zarkov: Don’t empty my mind! Please, I beg you! My mind is all I have! I’ve spent my whole life trying to fill it!
Yes the movie was ridiculous, but it is still one of my favorites. Heck it had one of the most memorable theme songs ever written. The score was created by the immeasurably awesome band, Queen. Freddie Mercury FTW!
If you are not familiar with the series, Flash Gordon was a comic strip originally drawn by Alex Raymond in 1934. There have been books, movies, tv shows, toys, and more made over the years. You can, in fact, find a lot of old, but free Flash Gordon videos online.
There are the New Adventures of Flash Gordon, a cartoon series from 1979, Filmation’s animated movie, Flash Gordon The Greatest Adventure of All, the 1940’s film, Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe, and of course a humorous take on the 1980’s film called Flash Gordon” (1980) in a nutshell. Flash even made it into the movie TED.
If you would like to watch the 1980’s film that got me started on the series you can buy Flash Gordon on Amazon for $12.49. Also, seriously, check out Pratt’s animated short. it is well done and it has a making of video at the end for some behind the scenes fun!