This week’s mystery movie was the 1952 promotional film “Flight to the Future … to the World of Plastics,” or “The Wonderful World of Plastic,” as we’ve been calling it around the Daily Mirror HQ. With Noel Neill, Robert Lowery, George Wallace, Helen Winston, John Eldredge, Charles Evans, Tom Wilde and Lyle Talbot.
Photography by Sam Leavitt, aerial photography by William Clothier, sound by Earl Crain Sr. and Roger H. White, story and screenplay by Jerry Warner, art direction by Dan Hall, color director James Sullivan, edited by Lawrence F. Sherman Jr. and Ray Sandeford. Directed by Erl Kenton, original musical score composed and directed by Morris Mamorsky, script and production supervision by J.M Mathes Inc. Produced by B.K. Blake. Kaleb Film and Television Corp. in Hollywood, Calif.
“Flight to the Future … to the World of Plastics” is online via the National Film Preservation Foundation.
I picked “Flight to the Future” to highlight film preservation, as a change of pace – OK to be tricky – and also because of Noel Neill and a cast of veteran actors. The film is a trove of images of mid-century decor, all made of plastic, and has a few interesting shots of Los Angeles. Howard Mandelbaum pointed out that I rarely do anything besides feature films and the only TV shows I recall are “Perry Mason,” “Johnny Staccato” and “Dark Shadows.” I managed to sneak in one animated film, but that’s all. So far, I’m drawing the line at drivers’ ed movies, but I may change my mind.
Curiously enough, Bosley Crowther did not review “Flight to the Future,” although I doubt that he would have approved of such goings-on. A Google search led me to “The Dollars and Sense of Business Films,” which has a marvelous, whimsical art design. It is so 1950s:
For Monday, we have a mystery woman.
Update: This is Helen Winston.
For Tuesday, Monday’s mystery woman has a mysterious companion. And no, he does not approve of such goings-on.
Update: This is George Wallace and Helen Winston. And alas, I don’t have any better shots of the TV set, which I’m sure involves plastic!
For Wednesday, we have this distinguished mystery gent. He happens to approve of such goings-on.
Update: This is Charles Evans, with 162 credits on IMDB.
Brain Trust roll call: Don Danard (Tuesday’s mystery gent).
For Thursday, we have the mysterious apartment house where our mystery leading lady lives.
Update: This is the Mauritania Apartments (often rendered Mauretania) at 520-522 N. Rossmore, designed by Milton Black for Jack Haley.
Also for Thursday, Tuesday’s mystery gent has a mysterious companion.
Update: This is George Wallace and Robert Lowery. Wallace (229 credits in IMDB) played Commando Cody in “Radar Men From the Moon.” His IMDB biography says he was nominated for a Tony Award for “New Girl in Town,” but the Tony Award website doesn’t list him. His IBDB listings are here. Lowery has 185 credits on IMDB.
And also this mystery gent.
Update: This is John Eldredge, with 224 credits on IMDB.
Our final guest is not especially mysterious and has amazing taste in neckwear.
Update: This is Lyle Talbot, with 332 credits on IMDB.
Brain Trust roll call: B.J. Merholz (Wednesday’s mystery gent).
For Friday, our mystery leading lady has no trouble parking her convertible at our mystery airport.
Update: Noel Neill parks her Ford convertible at Burbank Airport.
She also chillaxes with Thursday’s mystery pilot. They are crazy about each other. Can’t you tell?
Oh that wallpaper. That lamp. That ashtray. And that sofa. I’ll bet it’s upholstered in plastic!
I think our mystery leading lady is more passionate about this vacuum cleaner, frankly. Our mystery movie is brimming with mid-century decorative items made with a certain mystery material.
And here is our mysterious leading lady. She approves of such goings-on.
Update: Noel Neill.
Brain Trust call: Howard Mandelbaum (mystery movie and all mystery guests), David Inman (Thursday’s mystery gents No. 3 and 4), Benito (Thursday’s mystery guest No. 4), Gary (Thursday’s mystery guest No. 4), Mary Mallory (mystery movie and and all mystery gents), Don Danard (Thursday’s mystery guests No. 3 and 4), Thom and Megan (mystery movie and all mystery gents) and Sylvia E. (mystery movie and all mystery guests). The actor playing Santa Claus is, alas, unidentified.