Steve Goble

Choose life. (Deuteronomy 30:19)

Unlike when, in 2005, Tim Downstairs and I snuck a watch of Flatmate Dave's copy, this morning I discovered that this film has a gripping contemporary message for 2009 very early on.

It's when a character holds-up a copy of the News Of The World from 19th June 2066, and we can see that it only costs 15 cents. In the current credit crunch, the west's economic future looks bleak indeed.

Aside from the year, the second chronological Thunderbirds film has clearly moved events on a little since the live-action prequel Thunderbirds. Alan and Tintin have now grown up, but only a bit. In fact, their relationship since Thunderbirds appears to have quietened-down, and Alan is even indulging in fantasies about going out with Lady Penelope. (in the aging stakes, she's fared the worst BTW)

This is incredibly slow, and has a plot that can barely be described as such. It's really a few good sequences stitched together for the sake each individual ride, but even so, I found the early Thunderbirds episodes quite plodding on TV, and again so here. (I've don't know how the later, unpadded, episodes turned-out) Things do appear to be getting going when some incidental characters encounter the rock snakes on Mars, but this storyline is then never returned to. It's a bit like watching some very long deleted scenes.

The highlight of the film for me has to be the puppet versions of Cliff Richard and the Shadows, performing an entire musical number. It's the sort of thing that could only happen in the 1960s, and the world is a brighter place for it.

Creative types tend to be more interested in making whatever they want to, rather than sacrificing their vision to the great god of profit. This film might be a disaster, (my polite way of saying that I think it is) but it's worth it to get to see someone's undiluted work, warts and all. How often does that happen today?

Thunderbirds keep going!

(available here)
(review of 2004's Thunderbirds here)
(review of 1968's Thunderbird 6 here)

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