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Deke Rivers is a delivery man who is discovered by publicist Glenda Markle and country-western musician Tex Warner who want to promote the talented newcomer to fame and fortune, giving him every break he deserves. Romantic complications arise as Susan, another singer in the group, offers him devoted admiration as Glenda leads him on with promises of a golden future. Written by
A line of dialogue inspired the name of The Monkees, when Deke (Elvis Presley)says to his controlling managers in a moment of rebellion, "That's what you're selling, isn't it? A monkey in a zoo." See more »
[Wayne has goaded Deke into singing at the Buckhorn Tavern... Deke sings to keep peace, he turns to Wayne after he's finished]
Well, you ain't bad, sideburns.
Now tell me what it is you do for a living.
I work with my old man in auto accessories, why?
Well, I usually get paid for singin' as a rule. And I figure you oughta do whatever it is you do for me. So how 'bout steppin' outside and puttin' a new set of seatcovers on my car, huh?
Why sure, sideburns! What color you want?
[...] See more »
Young trucker Deke Rivers is picked up by an agent, Glenda and taken on a tour of Texas with another musician (Tex) and his band. While he enjoys the singing, Glenda is busy trying to whip up a media storm behind him by paying people to complain and starting rumours about him. Meanwhile Deke harbors a secret past and longs for the simple life.
The plot os this film very loosely reflects Elvis's own sudden rise from obscurity to worldwide fame. The story is pretty good because it isn't all put on Elvis's shoulders. Instead you could be mistaken for thinking that Glenda's manipulation was the main thread as it is given a great deal of time. This line is interesting because it shows the way the media machine worked back then shows New Labour weren't the first to use the media in this way! It is quite funny in some places but works best as a drama. How true to life it is in Elvis'' case is anyone's guess but this is quite good.
The musical numbers save it the most, it has several really good songs and at least one or two everyone will have heard before. Elvis himself looks great he has a youthful swagger about him and is believable in the lead role. His acting isn't great but he's not as wooden as he can be. Lizabeth Scott (what? No E?) is the best thing in the film, she commands every scene she's in and is really strong. Corey by contrast is washed out and barely makes a mark, but it doesn't matter so much.
The photography is good and has great colours for the whole film, it may be a little garish at times but it feels like the 50's from the colour and tone. The story sort of wavers bit in the last 20 minutes and the ending is a bit of a cop out but for most it's pretty good.
Overall there are better Elvis films out there but this has a reasonable drama at it's core and several good musical numbers with the King at his youthful best.
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