Time for day three of this year’s A-z Blogging Challenge for April 2013. I’m discussing with you all Modes Of Transportation In Television & Film. Now this can be anything from a car or spaceship to the likes of jumping through time and space via wormholes or even a phone booth! I hope you will enjoy reading my posts and feel free to comment on them with your memories and likes about each one. Our third entry is the classic car Chitty-Chitty Bang-Bang.
In stark contrast to the spy novels featuring James Bond and the use of a car as a supporting prop, author Ian Fleming wrote another story about another car, Chitty-Chitty Bang-Bang – The Magical Car. The car here was the main character with the human participants in the story merely the supporting cast. The novel was written in 1964 and adapted into a movie by Roald Dahl and Ken Hughes in 1968 to huge acclaim. Although many parts of the adaptation do not feature in the original Fleming novel, the car is the star here and its one of those stories that I look back on from my childhood and perhaps appreciate more now than I ever did then.
My son (who is 4) has seen the movie many times and does love it. Perhaps when he is older he will read the book which is quite a lot darker than the children’s film we all know and love. It features gangsters and guns and it’s not all children friendly and you can see why The Child Catcher was invented just for the movie to take the hard edge off the book version of events.
The car itself was based on a Mercedes racing car in the 1920s nicknamed Chitty Bang Bang. This was a 23 litre 6 cylinder monster and once reached the speed on 120mph, which I guess in those days was a huge deal. It did win a number of races with ease and although the car in the story isn’t quite as big or powerful, you get a connection between the success of the original car and the fantasy version’s grit and determination to win the day and its easy to see from where Fleming drew his inspiration. This is a classic mode of transportation, not only for the Potts family, but for generations of book and film lovers who just want to take a magical journey and escape reality for a while.