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    Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow [26]

    Movie Reviews
    This movie has to be a salute to the pulp Science Fiction novels and comics of the early 20th Century. All of the scenes and props appear to come from early artists’ conceptions of robots, rockets and weapons. In fact, The whole movie seems to be lifted from “Amzing Stories”. We even have a mad Teutonic scientist, Dr Totenkopf, seeking other runaway scientists. These other scientists have the knowledge of the strange assaults by giant robots upon major cities. A statement about notes being written twenty years ago after the "First World War" late in the movie places the year at 1938. Suspension of disbelief is the key to really enjoying the movie. Otherwise, you will get caught up in some of the real life inaccuracies below.

    One of the props in the movie is a Flash Gordon type laser pistol. If you are going to buy in to the laser pistol, everything else goes without saying. But I will list a few thing I enjoyed, but know to be already proved impractical. The movie opens with a zeppelin docking at what appears to be the Empire State Building in New York City. This interesting concept, like many others in the movie never came to reality. If you have ever been to the top of the Empire State Building, you can get vertigo just looking out from the observation deck. Imagine walking on a narrow catwalk down to the deck. Also, a single crewman is holding the mooring rope of the giant gasbag “Hindenburg III” against the winds over the city. The 1938/39 Hindenburg III seems to missing the tail swastikas carried by its predecessor, which was destroyed in 1937 in New Jersey. (They may be deliberately obscured by darkness and camera positioning. The First World War, as we know it now, was not the "first" until the Second World War. And The Wizard Of Oz (shown in this movie) was not released until 1939. Judy Garland tells us on screen that we are not in Kansas anymore, and that is quite true. We are in a different Oz.

    Cool giant metal robots emblazoned with a death head skull begin to attack the city. The only person who can save the city is Sky Captain, so the call goes out. Sky Captain (Jude Law) is a mysterious figure flying what appears to be a Curtiss P-40. At the time, this would have been one of the most advanced combat aircraft. This particular plane is much more sophisticated than a typical P-40. It also functions as a submarine! It can also make fantastic maneuvers over the streets of Manhattan without so much as a dented fender. Sure beats taking a cab! These metal robots look like they walked right off the cover of a pulp novel titled “Metal Men Attack!” I love the fantastic scale of the industrial plants. In the Sky Captain world, the industrial revolution was much more overwhelming.

    Polly Perkins, the love interest reporter, is played by Gwyneth Paltrow. She looks right at home in her Film Noir femme fatale costume. Nothing seems to phase her at all, except for when Sky Captain crashes right into the ocean without telling her that the plane is also a submarine. As a friend remarked, “She looks cross…”

    I highly recommend this film if you are a fan of old-time Sci Fi. This movie operates in the premise of, “How would it be if we just did not know what we know now? And things really did work as they were expected in the Sci Fi universe.” Buy this one for your DVD collection and watch it a few times. You will need to catch the detail that is sometimes obscured by the dark backgrounds. Note that the office number is 1138 on Dr. Jennings Door in a homage to George Lucas. {BB}

    See Expectation

    The IMDB trivia page is quite extensive for this movie and helps fill in some of the inaccuracies you might spot.

    Added: April 20th 2005
    Reviewer: BB
    29 Point Scale Score: 26    [26]

    Related Link (IMDB): IMDB
    Hits: 9055
    Language: english


    [ Back to Movie Reviews Index |

    Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow [26]
    Posted by BB on 2005-04-26 16:36:10
    My Score: 26    [26]

    One of the debates about this movie is the slogan for the Flying Legion "Ille Caelum Fremitus".

    Here is what IMDB says

    The logo for the Flying Legion is a winged lion with a banner reading "Ille Caelum Fremitus". This is not proper Latin. Caelum is really a neuter word, though a masculine form exists early on in history. Either the phrase should read: "Ille Caelus Fremitus" or "Illud Caelum Fremitum". Translated literally, it would then say: "That Roaring Sky". If, for instance, you wanted it to say "The Sky Will Roar", the Latin would be "Caelum Fremet". Latin has no articles, so there is no word for "the". This article (the) is implied in the use of the nominative case, not the accusative case as it is written on the logo. To summarize, the pronoun, noun, and participle of the logo do not agree in case or gender.

    Another blog posted a much simpler translation as "The Heavens Roar"

    A similar complaint was also posted on

    The logo for the Flying Legion is a winged lion with a banner reading "Ille Caelum Fremitus." This is not proper Latin, because "Caelum" (sky) is in the neuter gender, while the adjective "Fremitus" (roaring) is in the masculine gender. The adjective must agree with the gender of the noun to be grammatically correct, so the masculine "fremitus" must change to the neuter "fremitum." The proper banner should had read: "Illud Caelum Fremitum" (That Roaring Sky).

    However, a user on posted this correction:

    The Latin is correct, it is the assumption of the translation that is WRONG. It is "Those who roar to the sky" - Ille (those) and fremitus (roaring) are both masculine and nominative and match correctly. Whoever heard of a roaring sky? It's the lions/planes/pilots that do the roaring, not the sky!

    I am no expert, but I like that last explanation the best.

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