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Things We Like: “Robot Monster,” Fast Food Confessions and Animation Backgrounds

4 September 2010 Things We Like 2,790 views No CommentPrint This Post Print This Post Email This Post Email This Post

Animation Backgrounds

Animation buff Rob Richards takes still shots from the animation we grew up with — the Looney Tunes and “Tom & Jerry” shorts, the full-length Disney movies — and strips them of all their characters. Every last talking animal and teenaged princess has been evacuated, and what’s left is a series of soft, mostly pastoral backgrounds. (Only now do I realize that most cartoons of the Golden Era of Animation took place in the woods, where Elmer Fudd and the Seven Dwarfs are kings.) A lot of great unsung talents sweated blood on these backgrounds, and it’s a great thing to take a long, umimpeded look at their hours of devoted work. – Geoff Carter

Scarecrow Video’s Pick of the Week: “Robot Monster” (1953), directed by Phil Tucker

A space alien named Ro-Man (played by a fat guy in a gorilla suit wearing a diver’s helmet) kills off every “hu-man” on Earth except for a group of picnickers who happen to be protected by a special serum. Ro-Man hangs out in front of a cave, where he sets up his special equipment (a bubble machine, a television, and radio dials…all on a kitchen table!) and prepares to annihilate the survivors. He strangles an obnoxious kid but falls in love with one of the women and can’t consummate his feelings or kill the rest of the humans. My favorite scene is a close up of two characters’ hands as they try to fix a radio, their discussion filled with blatant sexual innuendos. The scene where they show the same footage of Ro-Man exiting the cave three times in a row is pretty funny, too. “Robot Monster” gives “Plan 9 From Outer Space” serious competition for the dubious honor of “worst movie ever” and is, therefore, highly recommended. – Spenser Hoyt

Monkey Goggles Klassics: “Confessions of a Former Fast Food Employee” by Shel Carrigan

From September 2, 2009: “You can blame McDonald’s for fat kids, mad cows, and Morgan Spurlock, but you’ll have to blame me, too. I was there. I made your Big Macs, took your order, asked you to pull up to the window, and poured extra salt on your fries for the beauty of it. Something in the way the salt came out of the canister mesmerized me. It didn’t just pour out — it flowed like a beautiful river of sodium, under the hot fry light.” Read the rest here!

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