POP ART: Episode 75, Romancing the Stone/King Solomon's Mines

Howard Casner • April 4, 2022

POP ART, WHERE I FIND THE POP CULTURE IN ART AND THE ART IN POP CULTURE, SAYS HAPPY ANNIVERSARY POP ART:  Yes, it’s the 75th episode of Pop Art, which means diamonds.

DIAMONDS ARE A GIRL’S BEST FRIEND. “Cops! What the hell do they want? I haven’t done anything… lately!” Traditionally, the gift for 75th anniversaries is diamonds. So my gift to you are two films about the search for precious jewels. Yes, it’s time for Episode 75 of Pop Art, the podcast where we find the pop culture in art and the art in pop culture. On Pop Art, my guest chooses a movie from popular culture, and I’ll select a film from the more art/classic/indie side of cinema with a connection to it. This time round, I am happy to welcome back as my guest, Donald McKinney, who has chosen as his selection the 1980s tongue in cheeky, postmodern Romancing the Stone, while I have chosen 1950’s MGM epic King Solomon’s Mines, both about a dangerous search for lost treasure.

And in this episode, we answer such questions as: What is it about the hair? Why did Diane English only have one screenplay produced in her lifetime? What does the name Quatermain mean? What did the critics misunderstand about Romancing the Stone when it first came out? Where does Valley of the Dolls come in? What does the phrase “romancing the stone mean”? What beat out King Solomon’s Mines for best picture? What’s the in joke about American Express Travelers Checks?