2010-01-01

Watching 'Master of the World' : Verne and Universal Peace


Watch on Hulu: http://www.hulu.com/watch/114695/master-of-the-world

Isn't it _interesting_ how stories repeat themselves? Is it just me, or does anyone else see similarities in Verne themes with recent 'Star Trek'?  

-Anti-hero's name: 'Nero'(vs. 'Nemo' from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea') 
-Fly's an enormously - powerful spaceship vessel from the future(vs. the 'Albatross' in this film) 
-is driven to destroy all military power on earth (and the Federation)

Regarding the movie: Performances in the film are well played. I'd thought Henry Hull's performance as the elderly manufacturer somewhat over-blown, and his daughter and her fiance under-played; but, in thinking about it -- they balanced the story and the stronger performances by Charles Bronson and Vincent Price.  

Regarding the story: In terms of the ships power & construction - I enjoyed that there was _just enough_ science to indicate the _possibility_ of what we observed. Again, I think this was Verne's way. The recurring theme of Universal Peace brought about by a 'strong man' seems to be a recurring them in Verne's books (here and in 20,000 Leagues Under the Seas). I think this probably stems from France's revolution and their sense of egality (French national motto: Liberté, égalité, fraternité). Robur seems a maturer, more fully realized 'Nemo'. Nemo was the Captain of the Nautilus -the undersea vessel from 20,000 Leagues was written 30 years earlier. At that time Verne's publisher Hetzel thought the character too controversial. Verne had made him Polish -- Hetzel had him rewrite and make him Indian and the theme less political(at the time France couldn't afford to offend Poland). Robur stands apart.

Verne's novels still read well today. And, the story in Robur the Conqueror and Master of the World is interesting & enjoyable to read ~ watch.  Good film. I'll watch again and recommend.

The characters & story in this film are actually based two stories by Verne...
 
'Robur the Conqueror':  
http://tinyurl.com/yzjbmd6 
... & 'Master of the World': 
http://tinyurl.com/yfuccyj 
You may enjoy the 'Classics Illustrated' stories:
http://www.box.net/...CI Robur The Conqueror.hta
http://www.box.net/...CI Master of the World.hta



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