One summer, many many years ago during a lazy, end-of-term school day, my class teacher suggested we give up on the notion of learning and watch a movie instead. My classmates and I were thrilled at this suggestions and immediately took to the school video library to find a suitable film. Between us we narrowed the choice to either The Last Unicorn or Condorman, and The Last Unicorn came a distant second as the boys of our group made themselves heard!
I hadn’t seen the 1981 Disney film before and was understandably excited about watching a superhero flick during school time. Michael Crawford didn’t disappoint that day. His antics whilst assisting Barbara Carrera’s KGB spy were amazing – he could fly, he had a cool boat called the Condorboat and best of all he had a car that, to me, was better than anything James Bond drove.
This fan-made Condorman trailer by Adam Perry does a great job of introducing you to the character:
The films part-animated intro is also worth a watch:
Since that summer afternoon, I’ve seen Condorman many times. It is for me the very definition of a guilty pleasure – it’s very silly, very dated and it is easy to understand why it bombed with critics and audiences. Despite all that, I still return to it every few years, mostly because of the sublime soundtrack by Henry Mancini, but also because Michael Crawford does such a wonderful job as the lead. Oh, and did I mention that Oliver Reed is in it too?
I watched the film again last night whilst researching the film and I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the film has lost none of its charm to me and now has something of a cult following. There are many clips and video reviews on Youtube but one that caught my attention was Chapter 20 of the Superhero Series from Haphazard Stuff. This two-parter video is great as it gives you plenty of insight into the creation of the film as well as plenty of footage to hook you.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to hunt down some Condor Crunch ice cream…