Basic but engaging and fun
26 September 2020
I'm torn over The Boy Who Flew With Condors.

On the one hand I first saw this as a schoolboy at initial transmission in the UK sometime in the late 1960's. I always had an interest in aeroplanes and spaceflight and this little Disney piece fed that interest. I won't claim that it started me in a life of gliding - but I will claim that it was in the background.

Much later in life I did take up gliding and today possess a DG-800B self-launching sailplane. I have achieved "All 3 Diamonds" and the UK 750km Diploma. I have 1500 hours in gliders and am an instructor.

So - I see Condors through the eyes of the 9 year-old child and as the adult expert. But I also see Condors as a piece of education and entertainment. This little film succeeds as both; but only just!

It is a very Disney piece; frivolous, flimsy and lightweight. Some of the pieces are downright silly. For example; we would never land in a duck pond and we would never roll up behind someone of a golf course. We would never fly in the mountains in such dangerous weather. However - we do use other soaring birds to help us and we do engage in different forms of soaring; thermals, cliffs/hills and mountain wave. And we do have a lot of fun exploring the skies.

Condors is very dated now. Those gliders are museum pieces and the methods and attitudes are completely outmoded.

Nevertheless - The Boy Who Flew With Condors is worth a watch. It's basic but engaging and fun.
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