CineSavant Column

Tuesday June 16, 2020


Hello — we have links today…

Last Tuesday’s Toho Sci-fi Double Bill review prompted correspondent Bill Shaffer to send along a pretty incredible link, to a hobbyist master model maker named Bill Gudmundson. Bill says that Gudmundson’s kit miniature of the Moon Bus from Battle in Outer Space ( ↑ ) is about 6-to-7 inches tall and just over a foot long. The man has several other impressive constructions artworks that appeal … half the joy in those Toho space movies is their raw, unadulterated TOY appeal. Gudmundson’s page Bill’s Kitchen has extensive galleries of well-photographed models. His ‘SPIP’ Moonship miniature kit is really something. Look for the Moon Bus also, under Original 3 — Lunar Exploration Vehicle.


While fumbling about looking for an image of some garden-variety Triffids, I stumbled on a really satisfying website that I think I may have linked to years ago. It’s A Guide to The Day of the Triffids, a photo-article ‘Great Reading Adventure’ written by Melanie Kelly back in 2004. The page examines the book (it was given a wealth of cover art), the author John Wyndham, and goes through the movie and TV iterations of his story, as well as visiting some of his other books. Not all are still in print — I long ago remember buying additional copies of The Day of the Triffids and The Midwich Cookoos just to enjoy the different pocketbook cover art.


And good news from The Criterion Collection on their September Blu-ray lineup: the discs for back-to-school month (gulp) are
Claire Denis’s Beau Travail,
Francesco Rosi’s Christ Stopped at Eboli with Gian-Maria Volonté;
Martin Scorsese’s World Cinema Project No. 3, an international compendium with films from Brazil (Pixote), Cuba (Lucía), Indonesia (After the Curfew), Iran (Downpour), Mauritania (Soleil Ô), and Mexico (Dos monjes);
Jules Dassin’s noir classics The Naked City and
Brute Force (both new 4K restorations); and
David Lynch’s superb The Elephant Man.


Finally, correspondent Norman Frizzle is responsible for my ‘mystery image’ up top today, the controversial monument to the notorious Jubilation T. Cornpone. Al Capp had the right idea to lampoon the veneration of Civil War rebels; I once had the mistaken notion that the Confederate Generals got statues because the history books say most were better than the Generals fielded by the Union.

Norman also sent along a YouTube clip to a full musical number from Li’L Abner where the offending statue of a Confederate General appears. Besides the featured player Stubby Kaye, Norman told me to look out for Valerie Harper and Hope Holliday among the dancers. I think that dancer Bob Banas is there as well. Someday his original home movies from the shoot will surface … we hope.

Thanks for reading! — Glenn Erickson