Monday, February 23, 2015

Science Fiction Double Feature: How Many Movie References are In It?

How many times have you listened to the opening song "Science Fiction Double Feature" from  "The Rocky Horror Picture Show"? How many of the movie references made by Richard O'Brien have you actually known?  Here is a line by line look at those lyrics.

MICHAEL RENNIE WAS ILL
THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL
BUT HE TOLD US WHERE WE STAND

#1--Robert Wise's classic 1951 Science Fiction film about the second coming of Jesus Christ and the reaction of Cold War Americans "The Day the Earth Stood Still" with Michael Rennie as Klaatu.

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AND FLASH GORDON WAS THERE
IN SILVER UNDERWEAR

#2--Larry "Buster" Crabbe as Flash Gordon who appeared in three serials: 1936 "Flash Gordon", 1938 "Flash Gordon's Trip to Mars" and 1940 "Flash Gordon Conquerors the Universe".

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CLAUDE RAINS WAS THE INVISIBLE MAN

#3--Claude Rains as Dr. Jack Griffith in the 1932 Universal International classic version of H.G. Wells' The Invisible Man" directed by the great James Whale.


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THEN SOMETHING WENT WRONG
FOR FAY WRAY AND KING KONG
THEY GOT CAUGHT IN A CELLULOID JAM

#4--Merican C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack 1933 production of "King Kong" with Fay Wray as Ann Darrow.


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THEN AT A DEADLY PACE
IT CAME FROM OUTER SPACE
AND THIS IS HOW THE MESSAGE RAN...

#5--1953's 3-D Science Fiction classic "It Came from Outer Space" starring Richard Carlson and Barbara Rush from a story by Ray Bradbury.

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(START OF CHORUS)

SCIENCE FICTION (OOH OOH OOH) DOUBLE FEATURE
DOCTOR X (OOH OOH OOH) WILL BUILD A CREATURE

#6--1932's "Dr. X" was the first all Technicolor Horror Movie from Warner Brothers also starring Fay Wray and featuring both Lionel Atwill and Preston Foster. The story with tongue firmly in cheek is about "The Moon Killer Murders" and synthetic skin.

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SEE ANDROIDS FIGHTING (OOH OOH OOH) BRAD AND JANET
ANN FRANCIS STARS IN (OOH OOH OOH) FORBIDDEN PLANET

#7--1956's "Forbidden Planet" based on William Shakespeare's "The Tempest" starring Ann Francis, Leslie Nielsen and of course "Robby the Robot".

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WO OH OH OH OH OH
AT THE LATE NIGHT. DOUBLE FEATURE. PICTURE SHOW

(END OF CHORUS)

I KNEW LEO G. CARROLL
WAS OVER A BARREL
WHEN TARANTULA TOOK TO THE HILLS

#8--Universal Pictures 1955 movie "Tarantula" starring John Agar, Leo G. Carroll and Mara Corday.

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AND I REALLY GOT HOT
WHEN I SAW JANETTE SCOTT
FIGHT A TRIFFID THAT SPITS POISON AND KILLS

#9--1963's "The Day of the Triffids" starring Howard Keel, Janette Scott, Kieron Moore
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Here's your opportunity to enjoy Janette Scott fighting the Triffid's in a very good movie I saw when it came out in the United States.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=or3ygBd56gg


DANA ANDREWS SAID PRUNES
GAVE HIM THE RUNES
AND PASSING THEM USED LOTS OF SKILLS

#10--1957's "The Night of the Demon" UK and trimmed by 12 minutes for the U.S. as "The Curse of the Demon". The film starred Dana Andrews investigating a Satanic Cult and was based upon the M.R. James short story "Casting the Runes". Dana Andrews, Director Jacques Tourneur  and writer Charles Bennett did not want to show a "demon", but Producer Hal E. Chester demanded it. Her never understood the story and thought of the film as a monster movie.


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BUT WHEN WORLDS COLLIDE
SAID GEORGE PAL TO HIS BRIDE
I'M GONNA  GIVE YOU SOME TERRIBLE THRILLS

#11--"When Worlds Collide" 1951 movie by producer George Pal that won an Academy Award for Special Effects based upon the 1933 science fiction novel by Philip Wylie and Edwin Balmer. Remade and updated by Steven Spielberg as 1998's "Deep Impact".

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(REPRISE CHORUS AND THEN ADD THE FOLLOWING FINAL LYRICS AFTER THE LINE: "AT THE LATE NIGHT DOUBLE. DOUBLE FEATURE, PICTURE SHOW" AS PART OF THE CHORUS' REPRISE)

BY  R.K.O.--WO OH OH OH
TO THE LATE NIGHT, DOUBLE FEATURE, PICTURE SHOW
IN THE BACK ROW--OH OH OH OH
TO THE LATE NIGHT, DOUBLE FEATURE, PICTURE SHOW

Note: for those who do not know R.K.O. stood for Radio, Keith, Orpheum Pictures, The motion picture and distribution company was created when the Keith-Albee-Orpheum (KAO) theater chains and Joseph P. Kennedy's Film Booking Office of America (FBO) were bought and combined by the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) in October 1928.


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