You'll find ‘Flash' on everyone's list of all-time top science fiction films. What most fans don't know is the incredible story behind the making of this cult classic.
Initially, George Lucus wanted to bring Flash Gordon to the big screen. He approached producer Dino De Laurentiis for the rights to make a film based on the 1930s comic strip hero. De Laurentiis denied the request and the young director went on to develop his own space-based drama. Ironically, it was Lucas' success with the Star Wars which opened the door for ‘Flash' to get made.
Through interviews with the cast members, we learn about the chaotic production issues which plagued the film. At the centre of this whirlwind was Sam L Jones, the young actor picked to play Gordon. He explains how his ego and naivety lead to a situation where he eventually walked offset. The film was finished without him, including the movie being dubbed without a single line of Sam's original dialogue.
As the documentary explains, his antics didn't go down well with Hollywood insiders, and the young actor got a reputation for trouble. On-screen Sam is candid about this time, blaming his ego and the agents who advised him. Ultimately, when his career should have been reaching the stars, he was sleeping on a friends sofa, broke and with a young family to support. It was clearly a painful period for the actor and his family recount his struggles without any varnish.
As Sam points out, it took him a long time to realise life wasn't all about him. This documentary isn't all about him either, and you get to hear some brilliant tales from all the leading cast and crew. Including the fantastic Brian Blessed (Prince Vultan), Brain tells how the Queen once asked him to do say the famous line – GORDAN'S ALIVE!!!!! Apparently, she watches the movie with the grandkids.
Overall, ‘Life After Flash' is a touching, fun and informative documentary about one of the most influential sci-fi movies of all time. My only gripe with ‘Life After Flash' was the lack of Princess Aura? Whatever happened to Ming's beautiful daughter?