by Miles Raymer
Learning to appreciate the Bee Gees can be tough. There's a lot of shiny, falsetto-disco baggage attached to the name, but pressing forward (and blocking out your memories of The Barry Gibb Talk Show) is completely worth it—pre-Saturday Night Fever the Bee Gees were a pretty much flawless psych-tinged pop group who wrote a ridiculous number of bafflingly good songs. Is there another song as beautiful and perfect as "To Love Somebody"? My extensive research indicates that no, there is not.
Cucumber Castle is an excellent place to start digging into the Bee Gees' good stuff. And if upon listening to the album you find yourself in need of more circa-1970 Gibbs, but maybe in video form and lighter on the gorgeous melodies—but with considerably more terrible acting—you might want to check out the made-for-TV film of the same name. Starring Vincent Price for some reason, Cucumber Castle is a prime example of the not-making-a-damn-lick-of-sense school of filmmaking that blossomed in hippie-era Britain. The fabulous sci-fi blog io9, which posted a ten-minute excerpt of the film today, describes it thusly:
Price plays the evil vampire Count Voxville, and Barry and Maurice Gibb play two princes of a kingdom that's been divided in half so they can each rule a kingdom for themselves. As seen in the above clip, Vincent schemes to get Barry and Maurice to kill each other in a spurious duel so he can inherit the chamberpot for himself. And that's more thought than the people making this atrocity put into it, honestly.
I somehow managed to make it through the entire ten minutes, and I have literally almost no idea what was happening. All I'm sure of is that Vincent Price should have rocked the muttonchop look a lot more, and that I never want to see the Gibbses "act" ever again. The clip's after the jump.