The Man of Bronze
This movie was my introduction to Doc Savage. And for a 9-year-old unable to distinguish "camp,"
though (perhaps because) he'd watched hours and hours of Batman, this is a sensational introduction.
The penthouse apartment! The fortress! The cars! The planes! The locations! It's all there!
Translated to screen pretty faithfully, except for the tone and the telepathy. And I still like
the majority of Ron Ely's performance, and most of the aides. Today I probably wouldn't think
about showing it to the uninitiated; It's too camp or not camp enough.
If only the movie was more serious! Luckily for this 9-year-old, it was.
Here's an obscure little press release for those who swore this movie went in and out
of drive-ins with absolutely no notice: (Material courtesy Jim Gould):
DOC SAVAGE CAME EARLY
TO THE CAROLINAS
and Warner Bros. was There to See
He got a Proper Sendoff
With the early opening of "DOC SAVAGE...The Man of Bronze'' in the
Carolinas, a full-scale exploitation campaign was staged that has all the
elements of super ballyhoo to coincide with super-hero Savage.
The film opened in 67 situations and every city had special material and
stunts to supplement a P.A. Tour by Ron Ely that generated press and television
coverage that extended far beyond the cities covered in the tour.
In preparation for the opening, mayors were contacted in each locality and
asked to name a private citizen who had performed an especially meritorious
service to the community or heroic exploit that benefited people. After
the selection had been made, Doc Savage himself, in the person of Ron Ely,
arrived in a special twin engined charter airplane and in airport ceremonies
awarded a special Doctorate in Savagery.
Each town saw Savage met by civic dignitaries. a group of costumed Doc
Savage girls, marching bands, press, radio and television representatives.
The media coverage was tremendous.
In addition to the presentations, special radio promotions were staged involving
the distribution of T-shirts, Heralds and other promotion items.
The Good Stuff
...is at Jim Gould's Site.
Jim is the biggest collector of '70s Doc Savage stuff I know, plus a swell guy.
And he taught himself HTML so he could share his collection with the rest of us.
We're talkin' foreign movie posters! Run don't walk.