(1958) dir. Nathan Juran
After watching the DVD of 20 Million Miles to Earth (1957), I turned on the little documentary that the DVD featured of Ray Harryhausen and his work, showing lots of clips of all his films, plus discussing his techniques and history. My son wasn’t all that excited about 20 Million Miles to Earth, but he started getting excited about seeing a Sinbad film and since I am on my little “number marathon”, I figured that The 7th Voyage of Sinbad would work fine. It was always my favorite of the three Sinbad films that Harryhausen worked on.
I recall seeing it in the 1980’s and being sort of disappointed with the corny acting and some of the effects…I mean the bulk of them are brilliant, but every once in a while you get a shot that is pretty clearly doctored, double-exposed or transposed…but you know, it’s purely silly to complain about that stuff.
Harryhausen was a brilliant animator, who worked with his producer Charles H. Schneer and director Nathan Juron, who also handled the live action direction on 20 Million Miles to Earth. I always loved the battle between the cyclops and the dragon. And the original skeleton sword fight. The cyclops is one of Harryhausen’s signiture characters, images of his films, showing the characterization and performance of the monsters.
The kids actually really enjoyed this film and have been talking about it a lot today, even play-acting the roles and characters. I think that I’ve figured out that Felix likes the movies with “battles” between monsters or characters. I think that was his disappointment with 20 Million Miles to Earth, in which the Ymir merely “battles” an elephant.
We watched a little of the Harryhausen doc on this disc, too. And it’s kind of neat seeing Felix get excited about the films enough to sit through the documentary portions. But I can tell you, there will be more Sinbad films here, probably relatively soon. But not until I finish my “number marathon”, silly as it is…I need to see it through.