Thursday, June 11, 2009
My Aunt Leslie went to see Flash Gordon at the local cinema in 1981…or so she thought. It turns out they were showing Flesh Gordon, a soft-core porn film from 1974 that poked fun (pun intended) at the ’30s serial. She walked out twenty minutes later once she realized it wasn’t the movie she thought it was.
Speaking of Flash, Queen have taken a critical beating over this album because it (supposedly) doesn’t compare to the rest of their oeuvre. Let’s remember, though, that it was never meant to be a collection of pop songs but a series of musical interludes that support the film’s visuals. Weren’t they asked to deliver a hard rock soundtrack instead of contributing a song or two that would merely be dropped in and truncated when the scene ended?
With this as the criteria, this is the only true soundtrack that I know of (with the exception of the Who's Tommy, which is a musical) that is composed entirely on hard rock instruments instead of a 60-piece orchestra. Again, this was new territory they were treading in; and Brian, in particular, rose to the occasion with his main title theme, battle score, and The Hero, which kicks ass during the closing credits. It would have been interesting if they were given a similar challenge to score Highlander in its entirety instead of just contributing a few songs.
So what’s up with Flash’s theme song being used in Blades of Glory with Will Ferrell and Jon Heder? Don’t get me wrong, I think it was great that the director opted for it to bring home the final skating competition…I just wonder who on the production team nominated it for inclusion in the film? Did they think that North American audiences would recognize it and buy the soundtrack? Whatever the case, I was pleasantly surprised when I heard it.
Oh, and if you’ve seen Flesh Gordon, be sure to check out it’s sequel, Flesh Gordon Meets the Cosmic Cheerleaders from 1987. There’s a Canadian classic for you.