For the second week in a row my new laptop spent four days in Data Transfer Hell at Geek Squad. It’s back home now and almost everything is working. So, let’s continue with the random thoughts on Encore’s Elvis Collection.
Movies Presented in the Past Week That I Liked:
Follow That Dream — I will always be thankful to my buddy Alan Hanson over at the Elvis-History Blog for pointing out the subtle nuances of this film. The more I watch it, the more I like it – especially the courtroom scene where Elvis utterly charms the judge and outsmarts the spiteful child protection lady. And I just love the end where Anne Helm transforms into a woman and nuzzles Elvis into realizing his feelings for her.
In many of his movies, Elvis plays characters with various flaws. Here he is initially presented as a country bumpkin, but he comes out on top in every situation. I found his character thoroughly likeable. On a similar note, I usually dislike the cutesy child actors in Elvis’ movies, but Eddie and Teddy in this were kind-of cool.
Easy Come, Easy Go — My reasons for liking this probably wouldn’t sway the folks who slam Elvis’ later movies when he was pretty much just going through the motions. For one thing, I hadn’t viewed it a bunch of times, so it seemed kind-of fresh. The second reason I liked it was that Pat Priest spent half her screen time in bikinis. She was hot as Marilyn Munster, but she is something else in this movie. And finally, there was a song I really enjoyed: “You Gotta Stop.” After some of the dogs Elvis had to sing in his 1967-68 movies, it was a pleasant surprise to find a good one.
The Movies I’m Tired of Watching:
Clambake – I’ve watched this one a lot, mainly because I like Shelly Fabares so much. However, she is much better in Girl Happy, where her character was more likeable than the spoiled rich girl she played in Clambake. So, I amused myself watching for Elvis’ Memphis Mafia buddies in bit parts. Did you notice Charlie Hodge giving Elvis’ character’s dad a shave early in the movie? You could hardly miss Red West as the ice cream vendor. You had to look pretty close to spot Jerry Schilling and Richard Davis at the clambake-themed pool party.
My favorite scene in the movie is when Elvis moves down the line kissing all the pretty women who helped put the hardening goop on the racing boat’s repaired body.
It Happened at the World’s Fair – As I said a month ago in the 50th Anniversary Movie Pictorial, “By this time, Col. Parker and the producers had given up any pretense of putting Elvis into quality movies, and this one was a real stinkeroo, in my opinion. The plot was very thin, there was way too much of five-year-old Sue-Lin, and the songs were weak (especially the four Elvis sang to Sue-Lin).
Harum Scarum – This is one I wish I could like more, because I am a big Mary Ann Mobley fan. At least she got better treatment from Elvis compared to all the double dealing he subjected her to in Girl Happy.
Unfortunately Harum Scarum doesn’t get better with repeated viewings. Mighty weak plot. I did notice something watching it again – by the time the movie was fourteen minutes old, Elvis had already sung four songs. And they were all very forgettable. The scene with the little girl doing a belly dance for Elvis totally freaks me out.
Repeat Showing — Already Discussed:
This Is Elvis
Sunday, May 26 – Girl Happy:
My third chance to see Shelly Fabares, and this is the best one. I love watching her sing “I’m Evil.”
I also get a kick out of Elvis escaping from jail in drag.
Monday, May 27 — Change of Habit
Tuesday, May 28 — G.I. Blues
Wednesday, May 29 — Jailhouse Rock
Thursday, May 30 – Roustabout
Friday, May 31 — Kid Galahad
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