Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Tuesday's Overlooked Movies: Himmelskibet

Himmelskibet is a big-budget Danish science fiction film made in 1918. It has big sets and lots of extras. See for yourself. This is a longish clip from the Marx expedition in the film, with the music by the Norwegian Kolar Goi.

This came up in the movie quiz our team kept. One of the members of our team had made three questions about obscure Nordic horror and science fiction films (Reptilicus, anyone?) and I wanted to make it four. After some Googling, I found this. It's a very nice clip and you simply want to take a look at it, even though it's not the whole film. 

More Overlooked Films here

10 comments:

Todd Mason said...

A nice, clean look to the film (quite aside from the print...I take it the negative was preserved in pristine condition?)...nice score, too.

REPTILICUS, once seen, can't easily be forgotten, nor surpassed in its ineptitude.

Cullen Gallagher said...

This looks badass! I will try to find the whole thing.

Juri said...

I notice there's been a presidential election going on Finland, why else would I have written "Marx" instead of "Mars"? LOL!

Todd: I haven't seen REPTILICUS myself, but the clip was hilarious. I certainly hope Dean Owen's novelization isn't as inept. The other Scandinavian horror/sf clips included our very own SAMPO, with the Cormanized title THE DAY THE EARTH FROSE, and THE HORROR IN THE MIDNIGHT SUN (or some such: takes place in the Swedish Lapland that experiences the attack of a space monster).

We could also have chosen the Finnish slapstick comedy PEKKA JA PÄTKÄ LUMIMIEHEN JÄLJILLÄ/PEKKA AND SHORTY VS. THE ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN from 1954:

http://store.mtv3.fi/productpictures/pic1_big/6415018618194.png

Anders E said...

Concentrating on the Danish text takes something away from it, though. Martians simply should not say things like "Ufred og Brode! Drab og Blod!"...

...and here's some ultra-cheap Swedish SciFi from 1986. Even considering this is a kid's comedy from the eighties, it is still extremely cheesy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4oV6B-yPatc

Juri said...

Hey, that's absolutely great! Too pity it was never shown in Finland.

Todd Mason said...

Fine fodder for next week!

REPTILICUS is inept in concept, but the execution, with the folks running off the bridge in terror from, theoretically, the clumsy wooden marionette monster which shoots rays from its mouth that have been drawn on the negative in much the way a child-filmmaker might with home-quality 8mm camera stock, is what trule Makes REPTILICUS what it is.

I wondered a little about the Marx comment, but didn't get around to asking...

Anders E said...

THE MARX EXPEDITION - It's 1848, and the spectre of communism is roaming across Europe, brutally tearing aristocrats and members of the bouergois apart limb from limb in a gruesome orgy of blood and guts. It's up to one man - Karl Marx - to codify this mysterious beast and turn it into a coherent ideology. By his side is his ever trustworthy sidekick Friedrich Engels. But will it be too late for our heroes to save the continent from mayhem and destruction? See for yourself in - THE MARX EXPEDITION!!!

Btw, the sequel is already planned: THE FRENCH CONNECTION OF 1871 - THE PARIS COMMUNE

You think I could pitch this to Hollywood?...

Juri said...

Yeah - just based on this, I'll pack my bags and move to Hollywood to sell the script! Might even direct it myself!

Janne Wass said...

As far as I know, this is the first serious sci-fi film to depict interplanetary travel and alien encounters. Simply for that reason, it deserves wider recognition. Some of the romantic scenes on Mars also have a very distinct Fritz Lang-feeling, and I think director Holger-Madsen could have included more of these to make the Mars sequences a bit more exciting (Utopias tend to get a bit dreary on film).

Fun fact: One of the screen writers was noted poet and author Sophus Michaelis. Although some sources claim that the film is based on his book, he actually wrote a book with the same name three years later, loosely based on the film.
Fun fact 2: The other screen writer, Ole Olsen, was one of the founders of Nordisk Film.

Juri Nummelin said...

Thanks for the additional info, Janne!