GOOD MORNING VIETNAM
1987, Walt Disney Pictures, 121 min, USA, Dir: Barry Levinson

Delivering dialogue that was frequently improvised, Robin Williams earned his first Oscar nomination as Armed Forces Radio Service DJ Adrian Cronauer, whose freewheeling mix of hits of the day and rapid-fire commentary ruffled military feathers in Saigon during the Vietnam War. Given the setting, there’s drama as well as comedy, plus lots of great music; the film’s platinum-selling soundtrack put Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World” back on the charts. Costarring Forest Whitaker and Bruno Kirby.


SOUTH SEAS ADVENTURE
1958, Flicker Alley, 120 min, USA, Dir: Carl Dudley, Richard Goldstone, Francis D. Lyon, Walter Thompson, Basil Wrangell

The final travelogue produced by Cinerama to showcase its widescreen process sets sail to Hawaii, Tahiti, Fiji, New Zealand and Australia through five fictional vignettes. Beautifully restored from the original camera negative, the color footage of these island paradises is spectacular, and Orson Welles’ narration adds a wry wink to these tales of adventure and romance. You don’t want to miss the fashion, dance and music in this time capsule of midcentury dream vacations!

Five separate stories are dramatized, woven out of a series of theoretical, island-hopping voyages that start en route to Hawaii, and after traversing the South Seas as far as Australia, end up flying back home from Honolulu.

In between, through both an adventurous shipboard passenger, a returning American WWII veteran, and the enthused narration, we're taken island hopping to stops in places lush, tranquil, and inviting, like Tahiti, Tonga and Fiji, then to and the even more exotic, primitive Pentecost Island. Native dancing and song are celebrated alongside cultures and customs spanning thousands of years. Sailing onward to New Zealand, we're reminded it's also an island, in fact two, with an unexpected geography including volcanoes and snow-covered mountain ranges. From there we' travel on to Australia, where we follow the arrival of a new European immigrant man and his young daughter, as they get accustomed to native animals like koalas and kangaroos, and then settle in for a new life in the "outback". There, they become integral in stories illustrating life in such isolated areas, including both the "School of the Air", a classroom conducted over the radio and the Flying Doctor Service, similarly radio-dispatched.

CINERAMA SOUTH SEAS ADVENTURE proved to be the 5th and last of the original, 3-panel Cinerama travelogues. Released in 1958, and 4 months after the 3-panel competitor, “Windjammer: The Voyage of the Christian Radich”, it is at moments similar, although overall an entirely different tale than previously seen in the format. With a partial narration by Orson Welles, the picture also, surprisingly may be the first to chronicle primitive bungee jumping.


DRAGONSLAYER
1981, Paramount, 109 min, USA, Dir: Matthew Robbins

The medieval kingdom of Urland is terrorized by a dragon. Its feckless king’s answer is an annual virgin sacrifice, until young wizard Galen (Peter MacNicol) becomes determined to destroy the winged serpent and seeks the sage advice of elder sorcerer Ralph Richardson. With jaw-dropping, Oscar-nominated live-action SFX by ILM.


Syndicate content