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MMD > Archives > March 2001 > 2001.03.03 > 05Prev  Next

Player Piano in Sci-Fi Movie
By John A. Tuttle

I happened to catch part of the show 'The Secret Adventures of Jules
Verne' on the SciFi channel last night.  What immediately caught my
attention was what looked like an upright player piano in an Old West
bar.  I thought to myself, 'someone didn't do their homework'.  But
since it was all closed up and not being 'played', I figured it was
just a prop.  (Didn't all old bars have an upright piano? ;-)

Anyhow, later in the program Jules and his side-kick thought up this
idea to make a robot to roust out the bad guys from town.  But he
needed something from the bar.  So there was an elaborate scheme
devised to get everybody out of the bar while Jules removed something
from the 'piano'.  Not knowing the unit was indeed a player piano,
I figured Jules needed the strings or something.

Imagine my surprise when in less than one minute Jules removed the
entire spoolbox.  Now that's a clever trick!  Well, he scurried off
with the spoolbox and went back to making the robot.  A few scenes
later, here comes the robot, walking, talking and toting two six-guns,
shooting aimlessly at the bad guys, and eventually scaring them all
away.  (Ya gotta love science fiction, the key word here being

Then it hit me.  The spoolbox was used as a reader.  Evidently, Jules
had also made up a paper roll with all the information necessary to
make the robot 'do his thing'.  I thought that was pretty clever, but
I couldn't help but wonder if I was perhaps one of only a very few
individuals who really understood how that spoolbox was used.


John A. Tuttle

(Message sent Sat 3 Mar 2001, 13:36:01 GMT, from time zone GMT-0500.)

Key Words in Subject:  Movie, Piano, Player, Sci-Fi

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