Saturday, September 21, 2019 13:20

Marineland Memories

This post is in a similar vein to Google Street View 1968 (Model Shop).

I was watching another random 70’s movie this weekend. Entitled “Zig Zag” w/ George Kennedy, it was from 1970 and was filmed around Los Angeles in many locales that were either somewhat or very familiar to me (and FYI, the movie was WAY better than most of the IMDB reviews).

Towards the end of the movie, as George Kennedy was on the run from the police, the film cut to a shot of a big dolphin tank surrounded by an audience in seats cheering on a show. I looked at the scene and after getting a quick sense of deja vu, the first word that popped into my head was “Marineland” which was strange because despite that association, I couldn’t remember what Marineland actually was.

Rarely when these sorts of brainwaves happen does one get the sort of evidence that proves or disproves the intuition. However, within 20 seconds, the camera pulled back and in the film was a “boom” similar to ones you see power companies use to work on power lines. Printed on the piece of equipment was “Marineland”. So, my deja vu was correct. But, I still didn’t have a clue what Marineland was.

Apparently, Marineland was a more compact version of Sea World located in Palos Verdes. My best guess is that I couldn’t have visited there any later than 1978…and perhaps as early as 1973-74. I’m reasonably certain that it had been 30+ years since I had any thought in my head of Marineland which closed for good in 1987. The area apparently was used as a movie set for a while before being torn down and being reborn as a luxury resort.

The best I could do for memories of Marineland is a fleeting picture of the entryway. I can’t summon any more memories than that, unfortunately.

I did have a similar deja vu experience with another movie. When I was about 5, I was taken to a drive-in movie theater with my parents (I assume I was there because they couldn’t find a babysitter). I was supposed to be asleep in the back seat, which I likely was for the duration of most of the films. There was a double feature playing that evening and one image from each film is burned in my mind. I could never place the image from the first film. The second image consisted of a man sitting at the edge of a dolphin tank. Totally by accident, a couple of years ago, I watched George C. Scott’s “The Day Of The Dolphin” and unexpectedly in my 40’s rewitnessed the same image from that film that was burned into my memory at 5 years old.

Really trippy man…I guess dolphins and other marine mammals are splashing around in my subconscious…

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