Monday, October 23, 2017

Robot Pilot - 1941

At some point about 15 minutes into Robot Pilot I actually said to myself, "Is this a movie about remote controlled airplanes?"  You see, like many 40's films, it moves at the pace of your average laden down adult banana slug.  Despite being a "Screwball comedy" that the Variety magazine said had "sex appeal".  Really?!  This film has sex appeal?  Well someone has a weird definition of sex appeal then.

Robot Pilot is about a great new invention, a gizmo that can control toy airplanes from the ground.  They demonstrate this to massive quantities by showing people controlling a regular sized remote control plane and then heavily implying that it could be done with the full size real planes.  It's basically as corny as it sounds. It's a regular fun thrilled romp as they fly little planes around, and us as the audience stare with jaws dropped that such an invention exists.

Remote controlled planes are, as you know, the epitome of human society and invention.  Seeing a plane that's about 8-10 inches big fly around without a pilot?  Especially since that plane is controlled by a machine they have to lug around in the bed of a truck that looks like it weighs about 500 pounds and is the size of a regular sized man?  It's downright astounding what mankind can make these days.

But I jest.  I'm sure that at the time, this was very eye opening.  Planes hadn't been around super long, a large percentage of people had never set foot in a regular size plane, and now they were controlling miniature ones from afar?  What was NEXT?  The idea of controlling full size planes must have seemed fantastic but also so plausible.  So you throw in half a plot about two girls who commit a crime of stealing gas, and you throw in some sort of Ruskie or something that wants to steal the invention for Communism.

This movie is not going to be attracting a new audience or anything as time goes on.  It was included on my boxset I've been watching....which is a secret for now cause I am not promising to finish it.  I have so many things to do, sorry yo.

Oh I do want to mention the extreme racism.  The fat Mexican idiot, played by an Italian guy, who's name is Pedro.  At one point a woman who doesn't know him says "Hey Pedro!"  He's like "How did you know my name was Pedro?" She literally said something like "You're Mexican, you're all named Pedro," or something along those lines.  And then he laughed and was like, "Oh yeah!  You're right!"  It was a stellar, accurate, and compelling moment.  Such realistic script writing has sadly been lost to times.  Modern movies would have you believe that Mexican people are individuals who aren't self hating, but that's where modern movies suck.

I suppose it was entertaining.  In a way.  But also paper thin, bland, and never needed to happen.  I give it 2.

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