Flash Gordon (1980): Lavish, Campy Rendition of Comic Strip

Flash Gordon saves the world from Ming the Merciless in this lavish and campy rendition of the famous sci-fi comic strip.

Max von Sydow’s Ming has developed a plan to destroy the Earth, and Flash (Sam J. Jones) and his companion, Dale Arden (Melody Anderson) are called upon to stop him.

Previously the basis for a more straightforward 1930s adventure serial, Flash’s story is designed here with cartoon humor by screenwriter Lorenzo Semple Jr.

To that extent, there are spectacular sets and cartoonish action sequences, set to a rock score by Queen.

Despite mixed reviews from the more serious critics, Flash Gordon has developed a cult status, with fans admiring the film’s humorous approach and the colorful production design.


Running time: 111 minutes.

Directed by Mike Hodges

DVD: October 10, 2000

MCA Universal Home Video