THUNDERBIRD 6 (1968)
Article 2607 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 5-25-2008
Posting Date: 10-2-2008
Directed by David Lane
Featuring the voices of Keith Alexander, Sylvia Anderson, John Carson
The members of International Rescue are on the maiden voyage of a new airship with anti-gravity gyros. However, unbeknownst to them, the crew of the airship has been replaced with spies intent on setting a trap to capture the members of International Rescue and their vehicles. Meanwhile, Brains has been commissioned with developing a new vehicle for the International Research organization, but his ideas keep being rejected.
My enjoyment of the previous Thunderbird movie (THUNDERBIRDS ARE GO) was somewhat muted by the static presentation and the occasional dull stretches where the movie spent too much time watching the various vehicles move at a snail’s pace. I think this follow-up movie is much better, with a more streamlined and more exciting plot. There’s a good sense of humor here as well; I love the fact that, despite all of the fancy vehicles on display, the one that saves the day is the lowly biplane. Some of the set design is stunning; I love the look of the airship’s game room, and the gravity control room with its rotating gyros proves to be an excellent site for a shootout scene, with characters constantly falling in and out of view between the gyros. Of course, the climactic peril is more than a little absurd, what with the crippled airship balanced precariously on top of a tower; this is the kind of peril I’d expect from a Road Runner cartoon. Still, given that all of the characters are puppets, I’ll just add that to the “suspension of disbelief” pile that’s necessary from the get-go anyway. I saw the final joke coming from a mile away, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a satisfying one. All in all, this is pretty damn good for a puppet movie.