August 11th, 2012

krazy koati

My flying saucer I pray this night you will sail back before the day gets bright

The producers of Unidentified Flying Objects: The True Story Of Flying Saucers --- Clarence Greene and Russell Rouse --- have not the slightest doubt that flying saucers are real, are from outer space, and are hovering around the United States this very day (1956). This utter sincerity about the mystery floating around drives the whole film, which insists itself to be a documentary, and even has real actual flying saucer footage to show, which the middle stanza of the overly long prologue backed by Vaguely Stirring Kinda Military-Ish Music explains ``will be made available to established Scientific Research Institutions upon request.'' Lest you still somehow doubt their sincerity, ``The Producer has placed the original documents supporting this Motion Picture in the custody of TITLE INSURANCE and TRUST COMPANY, Los Angeles, Calif.'' So there.

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Make no mistake. This is a weird artifact of a film. It's utterly nonsense, yet perfectly sincere; a documentary made up of reconstructions of things that didn't happen; even a branch of flying saucer belief that's been forgotten by the more exciting and sensational sides of things. The result is fascinating watching, and good stuff for that juvenile part of one that still checks the night sky for mysterious discs and accepts that it's just Venus all over again.

Trivia: Milan of Kroton, a wrestler, won an Olympic crown in 540 BCE as a boy, and then again in 532, 528, 524, 520, and 516 BCE. He competed in 512, but lost to his disciple, Timasitheos, who was 28 years old. (He also won seven titles at Delphi, 9 at Nemea, and ten at Isthmia.) Source: Encyclopedia of the Modern Olympic Movement, Editors John E Findling, Kimberly D Pelle.

Currently Reading: The Great Lakes Triangle, Jay Gourley. Piece of mid-70s mild crackpottery about how yeah, you think the Bermuda Triangle is something but how about all the ships and planes that vanish in or around the Great Lakes. Which could be fun, except that it's 180 pages of laborious introducing the captain or pilot and giving the measurements of the ship or plane, reporting its last known location, and then ``and it was never heard from again'', and some padding explaining that the crew was excellent and professional and the weather so fantastically clear that the fantastic clearness was still being spoken of decades later, and so on. Pass.