1980’s Flash Gordon is probably one of the most ridiculous movies ever committed to reel. I was really high and a bit drunk when I watched it, but as I understand it, Flash Gordon plays for the New York Jets, then gets on an actual jet, and crashes in some dudes yard. So it turns out this guy has a hotrod spaceship in his garage just like your crazy uncle, and they fly off and find some guy who is evil and stop him from destroying Earth using Flash’s massive football chest. All the while there’s a bunch of ridiculous music penned and performed by Queen and some orchestral dude.
This is basically what happens for a few hours
In fact, it would be fair to say that the cinematic excess of Flash Gordon was only matched the commercial Chevrolet produced to promote the futuristic C4 Corvette. Just as a New York Jet somehow ends up on the planet Mongo, a two door sports car built in Kentucky is transported to magical world of computers, mountains, hidden computer mountain tunnels, dry ice, and the Stig’s Terminator Cousin. In fact the only thing different is the dialogue, the purposeful campiness of comics replaced by an overabundance of words uneducated people think a racecar engineer might use.
“Feel the performance of the world’s first computer activated manual transmission!”
“A Corvette with never before available unidirectional turbine fin wheels and tires individually engineered for all four corners”
“...Superb in its engineering and technology, and defiant in its performance”
But the real kicker that I hadn’t noticed until recently was the similarity of the soundtrack, specifically Flash’s Theme, the main song in the movie. Their structure is eerily similar, from the pounding bassline consistent throughout, to the sharp interjections of synthesizers or guitar matched with equally incisive vocals. I would list more similarities, but… Well, let’s be honest, neither of these songs are very complex. What can I say, it wasn’t Queen’s best work.
In the 80s, however, people would like anything that wasn’t terrible, because most things were (cars, style, movies, drugs, Billy Idol, Reebok, wine coolers, Ronald Reagan), and this meant that the single version of Flash’s theme made it to Number 1 on the Australian charts, which makes sense really. Driving across the outback to the pulsing piano beat is the only time I would consider cranking the windows down and the volume up and belting out “FLASH! AH AAHHHHHHHHHHH! SAVIOR OFFFF THE UNIVERSE!”
Anyways, I haven’t been able to find out if Queen actually were the ones to perform the soundtrack for the Corvette commercial, so if any of you have any information let me know, and sorry if you thought you’d find answers. ALL I HAVE ARE MORE QUESTIONS.