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Flying Saucer Mystery, The

Entry updated 20 December 2019. Tagged: Film.

Documentary film (1950; exp 1952). Telenews. No producer, director or screenwriter named. Cast includes Admiral Calvin Bolster USN and Donald E Keyhoe; those added in the re-release include General John A Samford and Frank Scully. Approximately 9½ minutes; re-release 12+ minutes. Black and white.

Lost for decades until it resurfaced in the 1990s, this may be the first ever documentary about UFOs – apparently produced as a filler to be shown between full-length Cinema features. Footage of early US Air Force jet aeroplanes and V2 Rocket experiments is contrasted with photographs of supposed UFOs, at least one identified as light reflections on a window at a military base. Keyhoe promotes his own UFO theories, as in the re-release does Hollywood journalist Frank Scully, whose Behind the Flying Saucers (1950) originated the persistent Urban Legend that a crashed UFO was recovered by the US military in the late 1940s. Also in the expanded version, Scientist Noel W Scott (US Army Engineers physicist) gives a lab demonstration of a plasma-gas bubble whose natural counterparts might perhaps account for some reports. US Air Force General John A Samford appears via news conference footage. Incidentally featured, and providing marginal sf interest, are illustrations of Spaceships taken from early twentieth-century SF Magazines, none explicitly identified. [GSt/DRL]


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