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The Return of Captain Invincible

Updated on June 20, 2013

Captain Invincible is a Parody of Comicbook Superheroes

Most superheroes are smart and full of noble ideals, but my favourite is the flawed and much more human character of Captain Invincible. In this movie, Captain Invincible was a popular America figure in the 1930s and 40s, but the McCarthy witchhunts saw him labeled as a subversive for such things as flying without a pilots licence, wearing underwear in public and wearing a red cape, as red was the colour of Communism. He disappeared from the public eye, moved to Australia and became a drunk.

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Trailer for The Return of Captain Invincible

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The Return of Captain Invincible Movie

Years after his disappearance, the US President decides they need Captain Invincible (played by Alan Arkin) when the evil Mr Midnight (played by horror legend Christopher Lee) steals a secret weapon called the Hypno Ray. Invincible is found in Sydney, but has forgotten how to use all his superpowers, including his amazing computer brain, and can't remember how to fly. It is up to an Australian policewoman called Patti (played by Kate Fitzpatrick) to retrain him.

The movie was made in 1983 so if you are after special effects then you will be very disappointed. It is even hard to classify it - shot in Australia it is part comedy, fantasy, action and musical genres. Yes that right, a musical SF film. Several of the songs were written by Richard O'Brien, who wrote the music for The Rocky Horror Picture Show, including one sung by Christopher Lee as scantily clad women dance around him - you are not going to find that in any other movie!

The plot is sketchy at times, but the movie is certainly memorable - possibly because it is both unique and weird. People tend to love it or hate it - I am in the first camp. I was introduced to this movie at a science fiction convention in a room where most of the fans could sing along to all the songs, and it definitely qualifies as SF cult.

The movie writers were Steven E. Desouza and Andrew Gaty and they have scattered insider jokes through the movie, as well as some terrible puns such as the one about peach pits. There are spoofs of the 1978 Superman movie, the war-room scene from Dr Strangelove and the snake pit scene from Raiders of the Lost Ark. Invincible has to fight vacuum cleaners rather than snakes and somehow I find the idea of attacking household appliances to be truly scary! Also if you watch Mr Midnight feeding his pets you will realize there is a food-chain going on.

The Return of Captain Invincible Products on Amazon

There are several DVDs for sale through Amazon as well as used VHS tapes and a movie poster.

Christopher Lee - Choose Your Poison

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