That’s what THE WORLD OF TOMORROW aspires to be, a rollicking adventure that you dream of after a day of watching Buster Crabbe or Kirby Grant or Edmund Lowe or Kane Richmond or Tristram Coffin in their thrilling spine-tingling action-adventures of long ago. That’s right, I’m talking about those Serial yarns. Those improbable, impossible flickers with feats of derring-do! THE WORLD OF TOMORROW is ripped straight out of that universe.
Whoever this Kerry Conran is, he’s a geek. A big whopping glorious master of the geek arts. He knows his serials, he knows his Max Fleischer SUPERMAN cartoons, he knows Alex Raymond and he’s very aware of the 1939 World’s Fair. 10 to 1 you could sit and talk with Kerry Conran about Chesley Bonestell and Frank R Paul for quite some time. Chatting about WEIRD TALES or ASTOUNDING or AMAZING STORIES would be a pleasure, or rapping bout the days of E.C. Sci-Fi and the dreams of Feldstein, Wood, Frazetta, Williamson and Orlando would just wreak havoc on the vocal chords as you both began out geeking one another.
When Moriarty linked to that L.A. Times story about THE WORLD OF TOMORROW, I’m not sure if he understood the Mania that would be caused in me. 30’s Deco Sci-Fi is the domain of my dreams. It’s part of the reason I love KING KONG at such a primal level… Those Deco titles, that 30’s New York… It all just screams at me, like the place and time that I love most. That era just had a style that permeated everything from the double breasted suits to the polo pants of its heroes, to those magnificent shoulders on the dresses at the time or the ‘sculpted’ hair of its heroines. Nothing was plain, it all had style, and the dreams of what tomorrow would be… Glorious.
So much of the vision of Science Fiction from the era came out of Fritz Lang’s METROPOLIS and enhanced upon for William Cameron Menzies’ THINGS TO COME. Which were being torn from the pages of the pulps and their magnificent covers of the era. For sci-fi geeks that care to remember before there was STAR WARS or 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY, this is a fetish era… a special place that those that know it, know has never been captured on screen the way our imaginations have captured it for years. That might all change with THE WORLD OF TOMORROW.
As the film fades in, we find ourselves staring at a Chapter Card that reads: