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« I Love it When They Get Things Right | Main | Atop Cinderella Castle »
Wednesday
Apr072010

Magic Highway U.S.A... It doesn't get much better than this.

You've gotta see this.  1950s and 60s views of future transportation systems were so optimistic and wonderful.  Sadly, few of these predictions have come true.  However,  I am hopeful that soon my family car will be able to separate into two pieces, allowing my wife to head to a high-rise shopping center in one direction while I head to work in another direction.  Of course I'll be following color-coded highway lanes to glass tubes under the ocean on my way to my office-in-the-sky.

I love when I happen upon something on YouTube that I was not entirely aware of previously.  This was part of a 1958 "Disneyland" TV episode narrated by the great Marvin Miller and directed by the legendary animator, Ward Kimball.

 

Reader Comments (11)

Actually, I was surprised at how many of their predictions DID come true - decentralized cities (sprawl), GPS, rear video, highway guides, car evolution, linking nations, etc. And... you just heard of this video? I'm pretty sure it had some tie-in to the 64/65 World's Fair, because a lot of the same themes, narration, and music were part of Disney's project there.

Love this blog, btw.

April 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMatt

Good point. I guess I was focussing on the more George Jetson-y things like flying cars and stuff. Stuff like glass tunnels under water, cars that drive themselves, "air conditioned routes across hot desert wastelands", airborn emergency units, and the Monsanto style house, etc.

I was aware of this film before, of course, but not in it's entirety. I had seen bits and pieces but coming across this large portion of the film was a first. It reminds me of the "Walt Disney Treasures - Tomorrowland: Disney in Space and Beyond" dvd collection, which I love.

April 8, 2010 | Registered CommenterFritz

Totally - tubular highways make no sense at all... unless they're going for something pneumatic maybe, or underwater. but even now we already have the Chunnel, or things like the Big Dig, where we've conquered those types of obstacles. Still, I was just thinking yesterday while stuck in downtown traffic with emergency crews trying to get through, how much more efficient a flying ambulance would've been.

And completely agree - that Space and Beyond DVD is incredible.

Nice post.

April 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMatt

Can't get enough of that animation. Brilliant.

April 8, 2010 | Registered CommenterMitch

why doesn't Disneyland's TomorrowLand look like that?

April 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHoot Gibson

For that matter, if the Disney co. isn't willing to update tomorrowland every few years the only solution is to:

1. Make Disneylands TL Future From the 50's. Simply the best, most optimistic tomorrow ever hoped for.
2. WDW, Future 1971. 2001-esque. G. McGinnis "borrowed" heavily from the film anyway in Space Mountain.
3. Tokyo future 83' or whatever they want because they actually spend money on their park. They can have a Dolly Parton statue that stands 45 ft tall if they'd like.
4. France, close the entire park down for not having a Jungle Cruise. Millions of French people will cheer.
5. China, their tomorrowland will be a nuked out, polluted, hell hole where all you'll get is hideous forms of cancer.

There, Imagineers. Put down your Universal Studios job applications and get busy.

April 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHoot Gibson

I think a clip of this used to be displayed in the Cronkite version of Spaceship earth. As a kid I wanted to watch the whole video.. took me until earlier this year when I found that on youtube as well..

April 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTodd

It was in Horizons

April 9, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHoot Gibson

I've always thought that the solution to a quickly outdated Tomorrowland is to design it according to past generations' views of the future, specifically the 50s and 60s. For so many reasons this is a good idea.

"They can have a Dolly Parton statue that stands 45 ft tall if they'd like." ...... HAHAHHA

April 9, 2010 | Registered CommenterAdmin

If i remeber correctly, wasn't this played in the Rocket Rods que?

December 21, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterGreg

This clip was part of a 48-minute episode of The Wonder World of Disney. I've got the whole thing as an mp4.

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