Saturday, 23 April 2016

The Day the Earth Stood Still

a film by Robert Wise

The message from a friendly alien is clear: We come in peace. Don’t get too cocky, or we’ll destroy your puny planet.

We spent a cosy Saturday evening watching this film brought to us, once again, by Timur. I honestly can’t say it’s a masterpiece, but at least I finally get the cultural references in Futurama. The movie’s almost total lack of sense of humour made the experience even more hilarious.

Timur pointed out that on the DVD cover (which reproduces an original theatrical release poster), Gort holds quite a different woman. It matters not: nobody in this film ever pays attention to the woman. For example, Klaatu is shot and held by the army guys while Helen escapes unnoticed to deliver “one of the most famous commands in science fiction”, that is, Klaatu barada nikto. The phrase, in supposedly alien language, actually includes two Russian words: никто (nobody) and борода (beard), this latter is used here as a rhyming slang for никогда (never). Thus, apart from a direct message that Klaatu is no more, it contains a boast that nobody will ever (or, at least, until it’s too late) get its meaning. Duh. Another mystery cracked before lunchtime.

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