Last night I watched 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea…
Not knowing what to expect, I just sat back and let
it all flow in, and I was pleasantly surprised.
One thing I noticed right away… the film is not dated.
It really isn’t. It still works, and without all that
god awful too-loud-crashing music that insists on
accompanying so many of those late 50s/early 60s films.
I tried a few, and I was so distracted by their attempts
at evoking emotions, I had to shut it off.
Not so this film!
The next thing I noticed was that when Kirk Douglas is
on screen, you can’t take your eyes off him! He has
that Thing they talk about, like Dean, like Taylor, like
Brando, and your eye just can’t leave.
Yes, he’s a camera ham, and yes he finds more excuses to
take off his shirt, but still…he has IT.
Like James Mason’s Voice. When he Speaks, any one else
sounds like a whimper.
Oh, I want that 4-string parlor guitar he plays in the
famous “Whale of a Tale” song. It’s pure Art…gorgeous.
The song is cute when he sings it, throwing the guitar
around and flashing his famous grin, but then Disney takes
that song and bends it a thousand ways throughout the
entire film… a minor trend here, an atonal theme there,
so That perhaps is my only itch.
It was great to see Peter Lorre, although they could have
worked him a lot more, but in all, the Four men…
The Sailor, The Captain, The Scientist and The Sidekick,
were just Perfect foils to eachother.
And the Best of all? That Ship! that fantastic ship of
Steam Punk Dreams and Yellow Submarine Futures, completely
captures us, especially when entangled with the Giant
Squid, that animated silhouette staying with me from the
first time I saw it as a child, until tonight, when I
truly believed Seals are Indeed just Water Dogs!
As well, it is clear to me now that Kirk is the singular
reason for my life long infatuation with Sailor Boys.