Monorails on Film and TV
by Kim Pedersen

page four of nine


Naughty naughty!


Bad guy about to jump opening switch with The Saint hot in pursuit

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  The Saint – Fear in Fun Park, 1989 (TV)
The 1980’s version of The Saint TV series has one of the best monorail sequences on film. As can be expected, the monorail is featured during a chase scene. A bad guy attempts an escape by climbing up onto the Sydney Monorail track where it crosses Pyrmont Bridge. He narrowly escapes getting run down by a train. Simon Templar, the Saint (Simon Dutton), pursues him while he jumps track to track as the bridge rotating switch opens for a sailboat. Then, as if that isn’t enough, Templar jumps onto the sailboat from the track to avoid problems with the police below, one of whom yells “ey you, gedown aff the monorayel.” That’s my lame attempt at duplicating his thick Australian accent incidently.


photo by David Kamada

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  Zoo, 1990 (TV)
Another PBS offering, this lengthy program is a behind-the-scenes documentary of Miami’s MetroZoo. The UM I monorail is shown touring the zoo as it looked before the disastrous 1992 Hurricane Andrew. That hurricane shredded much of the vegetation and facilities, including the large aviary that the monorail once cruised right through. Happily, MetroZoo has been rebuilt in the years since the hurricane and the monorail continues to operate.

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  Monorails of Japan, 1992 (Video)
I documented my first trip to Japan in 1990 by taking hundreds of pictures and hours of video. A lifetime dream trip, I was able to visit monorails I had read about for years. The Monorail Society was less than a year old in 1990, so this documentary video was really an eye-opener for most people. Hardly anyone outside of the country realized the extent to which Japan had built monorails, hence the need for this video to get the word out. A new version was made for DVD as a result of a 2003 trip.

Don't you just hate it when evil guys stomp on your monorail track?

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  Mighty Morphin Power Rangers-the Movie, 1993 (Movie, Video, DVD)
Monorail track gets stomped big-time here. Bad guy Ivan Ooze (love that name) takes out part of the track as a load of kids ride a train towards the gap. Have you ever “morphed” into a monorail track? Let’s just say that the kids are rescued in a very unique fashion by one of the Rangers. The Von Roll monorail of Sydney, Australia was used for this sequence.

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  Northern Exposure – Marilyn’s Adventure, 1993 (TV, DVD)
Seattle’s monorail sure gets a lot of TV and film exposure. This Exposure is only a few seconds long. Marilyn goes to Seattle, but her adventure doesn’t include a ride on the good old Alweg line. However, it does cruise by several times.

Bad guy runs to catch up with Tom Cruise on Mud Island cable-drawn monorail below

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The Firm, 1993 (Movie/Video/DVD)
Tom Cruise rides the cable-shuttle Mud Island Monorail in Memphis, Tennessee during the film’s chase scene. The VSL shuttle isn’t much of a speedy transport, considering Tom is out-paced on the pedestrian bridge above by one of the bad guys trying to intercept him.
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