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Great Fun, Warts And All
on 7 September 2007
Elvis movies. They're that strange breed of film that however poor the finished product, they still have the potential to be enjoyable. Most of the films that Elvis made are poorly acted and scripted, and if judged by most benchmarks that film buffs use to evaluate movies, can easily be ripped apart and dismissed as cheaply made garbage. This is exacerbated by the fact that in the sixties, Elvis was working flat out churning out these musicals for the big screen faster than a chicken lays eggs.
Despite this though, there is a small group of films that Elvis made that are hugely enjoyable, more than the sum of their parts if you like, and this is one of them. I rate this as a 5 star effort, my favourite of the King's movies, and one slight step ahead of Blue Hawaii.
Elvis and his bandmates take on the job of watching over a Chicago gangsters daughter while she hits party town Fort Lauderdale during college summer recess.
The plot reeks of sun, sea, sand and romance, funky sixties music and funny moments. And of course (as in all Elvis movies) it features the inevitable punch up, with laughable fight choreography, but fun anyway.
There are a few great touches of old style humour. Gary Crosby has an classic line in the film ...... 'This year I'm not going to play the field, no sir. This year I'm gonna pick me about a half dozen chicks and go steady with 'em'.
Despite the dodgy script, poor acting and direction, I can still watch this timeless movie over and over again warts and all, because it is such a sunny, feel good song-fest, and to decry Girl Happy for it's faults would be to miss the point by a margin bigger than Elvis Presley's bank balance.
As I said, this is my favourite Elvis movie, and considering he won't be making any more, I suppose it will stay that way.