Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Lancaster: 6 Degrees of Star Trek

Always on the look out for the 6 degrees that connect (almost) anything to  Star Trek

Illustrator Juan Ortiz says here that he modeled his recent retro poster for the Star Trek episode "Is There in Truth No Beauty" on Saul Bass's poster for Birdman of Alcatraz, starring Burt Lancaster.

I watched Birdman (1962) last night. Lancaster plays Robert Stroud, a killer who, condemned to life in solitary confinement, began to breed and study birds and write articles and books about diagnosing and treating bird diseases.

Two and a half hours of a guy raising birds in prison? 
Actually, it's pretty gripping, and I ended up wishing there were a lot more about the birds and a lot less (like, none) of the blatant "prison kills men's souls" stuff, which, here, never rises above movie-of-the-week sentimentality.

Nice cinematography by Burnett Guffey (who won an Oscar for Best Cinematography for From Here to Eternity (1953), also starring Lancaster).

Wonderfully, the film devotes 2 full minutes to showing a baby canary emerging from its egg. It's riveting, I thought, both in contrast to the Birdman's grim life in solitary confinement and also as physical comedy;
I could see Don Knotts (Barney Fife) or Rowan Atkinson (Mr. Bean) playing the powerfully gawky baby bird.

From 2:00 min to the end: 

No comments: