Flash Gordon, the 1980 sci-fi cult classic from Mike Hodges has been given a fresh 4k makeover. Thanks to Studiocanal, the film looks better and more colorful than ever as seen in the released trailer.
According to an Empire Online article by James White, the film based on a 1930 comic strip about an American footballer tasked to save the planet from an evil dictator has a lot of entertainment value. The cast led by Sam Jones together with a classy ensemble including the late Max Von Sydow, Brian Blessed, and the dashing Timothy Dalton is a treat in itself.
Mike Hodges says “I’m very grateful to Studiocanal for this brilliant 4k restoration. The restoration captures perfectly the vivid colours of the sets, skies and costumes. It also corrects some of the problems encountered with the special effects system we used. With Chroma key compositing we could insert skies, rocket ships, hawk-men, pretty well whatever we wanted, into the blue backing built into the studio sets. The problems came later when we had to eliminate, for example, the wires used on the hawk-men. We were eventually successful but even then some 35mm prints were variable and the wires would be back again. With this new restoration, that problem is thankfully laid to rest”.
Hodges adds that compared to CGI (Computer Generated Imaging), Chroma key is primitive but chose to stick it out with the old fashioned system as he didn’t want the restored film to be too slick since the 1980 Flash Gordon is a resurrected art from a then 50-year old comic strip.
The 4k restored version of Flash Gordon will be out as a collector’s edition Blu-ray, DVD, Steelbook, and on VOD which includes brand new extras from August 3. Preorder it via this link.