Monday, September 10, 2007

Q: are we not men?

Creation of The Humanoids (1962)
Dir: Wesley Barry.
Cast: Don Megowan, Erica Elliot, Don Doolittle, George Milan, Dudley Manlove, David Cross.

Was She One Of The Green-Blooded People?

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A future Earth:
A nasty nuclear war (is there any other kind?) has resulted in the total extermination of 92% of the human race and left the remaining survivors riddled with radiation poisoning, scabs and bad teeth meaning the prospect for humanity surviving via the medium of 'the shag' looking very grim.

To keep civilization ticking over smoothly, the remaining humans go into overdrive building over a billion robots to handle all the everyday jobs (bin men, STV voiceover announcers, working in the off licences, saying "In a world...." at the start of trailers etc.) and over the years these automatons have been
constructed to emulate humans more and more, eventually becoming sentient and possibly even more human than their human 'masters'.

As is usual in situations like this, a nasty group of bad men (somewhat kinkily) named the “Order of Flesh and Blood” push for a ban on these human looking machines (know bizarrely as 'clickers') insisting that any new robots must be bald, blue and dressed in boiler suits left over from Brian Tilsley's garage. The situation goes from bad to worse when one such clicker goes a wee bit mental, killing his creator Dr. Raven (Doolittle).

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First prize and runner up: Patrick Stewart
lookalike contest, Minehead, Butlins, 1974.

Robot hater, founder member of the Order and all round rugged tough guy Kenneth Cragis (Megowan) suggests a solution to the problem: kill all the clickers, which is nice.

The rest of the group think this may be a wee bit extreme and start to distance themselves from 'crazy' Cragis, who on visiting his sister for a good old sulk is surprised and oh-so slightly annoyed to find that she has become 'involved' in the state of 'rapport' with a robot named Pax (Cross). Rapport occurs when a robot and a human begin to share the same mindset – the humans every desire is instantly understood by the robot partner and fulfilled (not as rude as it sounds really, sorry).

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"Touch my red hot ring".

After much fighting and sulking Cragis storms off to his fantastic plastic bachelor pad for a tearful wank and a pot noodle (probably).

Even this small solace is interrupted by a knock at his door when the beautiful
(and very 60's breasted) Maxine Megan (Elliott) appears out of the blue and into his arms.

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"Are you looking at my bra?"

After a whirlwind romance (and lots and lots of cheesy B-grade SciFi dialogue) Cragis and Maxine stumble across a secret that will shake their beliefs to the very core and my explain the terrifying secret of the
Creation of The Humanoids...

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Most famous for being Andy Warhol's favourite SciFi movie (and featuring on the inside sleeve of the Bronski Beat Age of consent album), Creation of The Humanoids, when looked at from a purely production point of view is a cheaply made, warehouse bound 'B' flick populated by bald pated, blue toned men with acting as stilted as the wooden slats pretending to be a futuristic laboratory topped off by a particulary lurid poster design.

But look past all this and you'll find a quirky and intelligent lo-fi movie thats ideas pre-date many of the themes and concepts that would go on to dominate books and movies under the 'cyberpunk' banner more than two decades later. Talky to a point where you can imagine that writer Jay Simms originally envisaged this as a stage production.

An undiscovered gem.

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