Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Cinema Cycle - The Absent-Minded Professor

(Cardio Workout And Reviewing Movies At The Same Time)


DATE: 08/06/2014

FORMAT: LaserDisc

TIME RIDDEN / FILM LENGTH: 1 hour 36 minutes



SYNOPSIS: A small town college professor invents a substance that has limitless energy, but loses his fiance in the process and spends the remainder of the film trying to woo her back.

CONCEPT IN RELATION TO THE VIEWER: Small town life was golden back in the 1950s. Everyone was caucasian, good and evil were easy to spot, and college is where all the smart, cool people hung out.

PROS AND CONS: Like many my age, I had seen this movie when I was a kid.  I have fond memories of it, but recalled little except for the flying Model T powered by ‘Flubber’.  After watching it again, I was pleasantly surprised.  

While it is not ‘Gone with the Wind’ or ‘Laurence of Arabia’, this is a competent movie.  Disney churned out dozens of these types of films back in the 1950s and 1960 and most are considered rather ‘fluffy’ and not that artistic in nature.  But a second look revealed something that is often lost on today’s viewers.  The folks at Disney were craftsman that knew how to mass produce quality film in a studio system.

This film flows well.  It carries you along on a humorous ride through 1950s America.  The acting is exceptional, especially Fred MacMurray and Keenan Wynn.  The concept that a smart maverick can still make scientific breakthroughs in his garage is alive and well here.

The special effects are rather hokey, meant to be funny and yet, they just ‘work’ in the film.  You actually want to believe that people can jump 20 feet high while wearing Flubber shoes.  And just like I did back in 1962, I want a flying Model T all over again.  

To read an overview of this project, check out the initial post for this series.

This film is a part of my LaserDisc Collection.

Clicking on the title will take you to the Internet Movie Database (IMDB) entry for this film. 

This film was viewed while exercising on my recumbent cycle.  A summary of my time spent working out on my journey through movie-land can be found on