The transformation of the melodrama…spectacle

May 18, 2008 § 1 Comment

How often have we seen this scene in films:

“They’ve made a torpedo-boat out of that tender ”
He sprang upon the rail, steadying himself with
a stay. “Ready?” he asked. “Look sharp!”
The two dived as one, and not until three hundred
feet or more separated them from the schooner did
either dare pause for a backward glance.
Then the impact of the launch against the Sea-
venture
‘s side rang out across the waters, and with a
roar the launch blew up, spewing skyward a widespread
fan of flame. There followed a crackling
noise, and bright flames licked out all over the
schooner from stem to stern.

(Trey o’ Hearts, p. 66 — after a forest fire through Maine, two rapids, and life-defying moments galore. A second boat explosion is p. 114. A car crash p. 116. A car explodes p. 145. There’s a train crash on a trestle above some Western gully p. 184))

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