Thunderbirds: International Rescue Edition

Directed by David Lane

> > Aug 2004

Thunderbirds: International Rescue Edition - Directed by David Lane
By Lorraine CarpenterBased on the British TV series Thunderbirds (1964-'66), these two feature films (1966, 1968) hit stores on July 20, coinciding with the release of a live action Thunderbirds film directed by Jonathan Frakes (aka Ryker from Star Trek: The Next Generation). Live action? Sounds like a cheap attempt to ride the back of a name show using an existing script, because Hollywood can't squeeze out an original idea these days. Relieving Thunderbirds of "super-marionation" defeats the purpose of the concept, which is as follows: millionaire ex-astronaut Jeff Tracy, his five sons (a multi-hero premise inspired by Bonanza!) and secret agent Lady Penelope are International Rescue, an Earth-based team that coordinates missions throughout the galaxy in Thunderbird ships. And, apart from the occasional seamless live action inserts, everything is handmade. In the wake of major developments in SFX and CGI, not to mention the acceleration of editing, Thunderbirds may look quaint to today's audience, but the achievements of its creators Gerry and Sylvia Anderson were absolutely amazing at the time. Sure, the marionettes are slightly disturbing - their shifty eyes, their inability to walk (hence the "futuristic" transport), their frozen faces (each doll had several heads to change expression) and their generally awkward appearance (posing rather than moving). Despite this, the marionettes and their costumes are beautifully crafted and the tech is brilliant. Considering the gruelling work that went into every detail, it's no wonder the camera lingers so lovingly (even perversely) on each spacecraft, launch, landing, gunfight, fire fight and explosion, which are plentiful in these stories of rampaging aliens, hijacked ships and Bond-style international intrigue, complete with comedic tangents. The films will reward your patience, and the DVDs' excellent bonuses - commentary by David Lane and Sylvia Anderson, fascinating featurettes, photo galleries, quizzes and trailers - are worth the price alone. (MGM)
Mailing List
Google Bookmarks
Be the first to comment
Keep me logged in
Prove You Are Not a Robot
To remove this step go back and login.


Most Popular Stories

  1. Ryan Adams Calls Out Fan for Triggering Ménière's Episode Onstage with Her Camera FlashNEWS: Ryan Adams Calls Out Fan for Triggering Ménière's Episode Onstage with Her Camera Flash
  2. Circa Survive - 'Descensus' (album stream)MUSIC / VIDEO: Circa Survive 'Descensus' (album stream)
  3. Devin Townsend - An Alien Among UsTIMELINE: Devin Townsend An Alien Among Us

Latest Issue: Aug 04 Issue