Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The First Men in My Moon!

Yesterday, July 20th, was the 40th anniversary of the day Nassau shot a live action remake of my darling George Pal's fantasy film Destination Moon, entirely on one hell of a rugged, remote location, without even paying him a royalty. Honestly. How rude was that?

H.G. Wells had ripped off George's great idea even before Nassau, disguising his theft by writing his Pal rip-off novel,
The First Men in the Moon, before George was born, and then dying before Destination Moon was made. Very smooth Herb, but it didn't fool George. He sued Wells, and received the film rights to The War of the Worlds and The Time Machine as recompense. Then George allowed Ray Harryhausen to shoot Herb's First Men in the Moon, knowing that it would be seen for what it was, a poor attempt to steal Destination Moon by moving it back a century. That's how the secret ways of Hollywood work.

But when Nassau's unlicenced rip-off, Apollo 11, came out in 1969, everyone got so excited, even though they'd cut out all the Selenites, moon monsters, and caves full of beautiful women who have never seen a man before. Really, did they expect us to believe a moon with no monsters or blonds in skimpy skirts and red pumps? They didn't even encounter Zsa Zsa Gabor! I'm serious! How stupid do they think we are? Nassau even had them using rockets to get there (Really!), instead of Cavorite-coated spheres, as in real life.

And don't get me started on that Jules Verne thief, claiming to have invented science-fiction when it was George who is known all over Hollywood as "The Father of Science-Fiction." At least in Verne's Pal rip-off, From the Earth to the Moon, he didn't fall for all that rocketry nonsense. Verne much more sensibly had his astronauts shot to the moon from a giant gun, the way any normal person would travel. How difficult can it be to figure out how to get to the moon (Cavorite or a giant gun)? It's not rocket science.

But yesterday was also the anniversary of a vastly more historically-important event: the unbelievable bender I went on following the premiere of the final movie of my career, the only film I ever directed, a hardcore adaptation of Radcliffe Hall's novel The Well of Loneliness (he should have called it Women in Love, but D. H. Lawrence of Arabia had already used the title), updated into the world of stewardesses and cheerleaders. It's all documented in my autobiography, My Lush Life.

The premiere, on July 17th, was a disaster, and I went off to get good and drunk. When I woke up a few days later, July 20th, I was in the most barren resort I've ever seen. It was blisteringly hot in the sunshine and subzero in the shade, and the air was so lousy I felt absolutely smothered. I haven't had such a hard time getting a breath since I went down on Milton Berle.

It turned out that I was on some kind of kinky "Double Date" with a pair of pretty hot guys who called themselves Neal and Buzz. Well it was easy to see how I'd been seduced. "Kneel" has always been a command I've taken with pleasure, and there's nothing I like better than getting a "Buzz" on.

It seems that I'd gone off in the most cramped vehicle you could ever imagine with Neal and Buzz to this very remote private resort, called Tranquility Bass, on the shore of a body of water called The Sea of Tranquility (And let me tell you, the tide was out!), in some country called Luna. I'd never been there before, and I can assure you, I'm never going back. This place was terrible! No staff. No ammenities. Not even a souvenir shop.

Neal and Buzz must have been afraid of contagion or something (I have this effect on men sometimes), as they were both wearing what looked like Haz-Mat suits all the time, and would not take them off! Not really my idea of good sex. And here I was, so svelte it was like I'd taken off five-sixths of my weight, and yet I couldn't get a shag from the men who'd brought me 240,000 miles just to be alone. I hadn't felt so suddenly light since the day I - ah - adopted my daughter.

And when I did finally get Neal to get romantic, he said to me, "That's one small step for man, one giant slut for mankind." A bit rude, if you ask me. I also overheard Neal and Buzz gossiping on the phone with their buddies, Dick Nixon and Walt Cronkite, about sex with me, saying, "We came in peace for all mankind." All mankind? Even I won't do all mankind! I wouldn't do Nixon for one, and I'm never doing Dick Cheney again either. (Trust me ladies, don't do Cheney unless you don't mind him shooting you in the face. Normally I don't mind that, but he hadn't even brought along any moist towelettes.) No, the most I'll do would be most of mankind. Let's say a quorum.

Fortunately, Neal and Buzz had had their driver, a guy named Mike, waiting in the car, orbiting overhead, motor running, so after the most airless, uncomfortable, lousy-sex-filled 22 hours of my life, I got the guys to take me home again, although man, that was a long drive back. And then they stuck me with the bill for the trip. Holy Mother of Groucho, that was the most expensive excursion I have ever been on! They didn't even reduce it for triple occupancy! You could go to Mars for that much money, where you'd at least be able to hang out with Ray Walston.

An odd lousy date to commemorate, but the other big thing to happen that month was the break-up of The Beatles, and who wants to remember that?

Sorry to have been so long between posts, but they keep me busy over at The Huffington Post. I'm doing weekly recaps of Big Brother there. Here's links to the first three, Big Brother 11: Meet the Fockers, Big Brother 11: Deride the Wild Surfer, and Big Brother 11: May the Dork Be With You, and here's a link to the heartbreaking piece I posted about the death of The Sexiest Man No Longer Alive, Karl Malden: We All Killed Karl Malden. Enjoy them as you would me.

Cheers darlings.