Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Robin Williams IS Popeye!

Okay! Let's take E. C. Segar's classic comic strip narrative about a tough one-eyed sailor with a heart of gold and his search for his dear old pappy and give it to maverick filmmaker Robert Altman (M*A*S*H, NASHVILLE). We can get that incomprehensible VILLAGE VOICE cartoonist, Jules Feiffer to write the script! He used to write THE SPIRIT, you know! Oh, and let's cast Robin Williams, that TV alien, in the title role! Wouldn't that be just perfect? Hmmmm...Still missing something. THAT'S IT! Let's make it a musical and use that drugged up alcoholic Harry Nilsson (SKIDDOO!) to do the score!
One of the weirdest movies of its time, Robert Altman's POPEYE is not good but not bad in the traditional sense either. Certainly Robin Williams has gone on to prove himself as an actor many times over and Nilsson is now regarded as (to paraphrase Phillip Norman) the Orson Welles of Rock. Feiffer? Hey, how come Frank Miller didn't think of using HIM? Don't get me started on Altman, however.

This all reminds me that it should soon be time for another of Fantagraphics' splendid reprints of Segar's original strips!


Ed South said...

Easily near the top of my list of my all time Top 10 Favorite Movies!

Anonymous said...

The casting was perfect. The script and espically the directer were not very good.

Bob Andelman said...

You might enjoy this Mr. Media podcast interview with cartoonist Jules Feiffer, who talks about the new collection of his comic strips from the Village Voice, Explainers, getting his start with Will Eisner on The Spirit, his plays (Little Murders), his movies (Carnal Knowledge, Popeye), the Disney musical adaptation of The Man in the Ceiling, and his forthcoming memoirs.

Anonymous said...

saw it when it came out; we were confused. it didn't have segar-like humor or fleischer wackiness, just people potraying cartoon characters. nilsson is primo in my book.