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Chad Gates has just gotten out of the Army, and is happy to be back in Hawaii with his surf-board, his beach buddies, and his girlfriend. His father wants him to go to work at the Great Southern Hawaiian Fruit Company, but Chad is reluctant. So Chad goes to work as a tour guide at his girlfriend's agency. Written by
Pat McCurry <firstname.lastname@example.org>
In 1959, Hawaii became recognized as a station in the Union. In 1961, Elvis went there to film the first in his trilogy to Hawaii, Blue Hawaii. I wrote the plot summary, so I won't go through what it is about. I will say that it is the only musical he is really good at because it was the original that was then followed by several imitations...all done by Elvis.
Elvis wanted to be a real actor in a film with bite, but this was as close as he would come. The script is light and fun, the acting is good and there are a few songs that aren't that embarassing to The King. Joan Blackman is great as his girl, Maile (I couldn't picture Juliet Prowse in the role since she looked too strong for the character). Angela Lansbury is hilarious in the role of his mother. She says it was a low point in her career, but in truth the chemistry she has with the rest of the cast is good. It is also full of breathtaking scenery. Even the interiors that were filmed in Hollywood don't look bargain budget.
Sadly, Elvis would make more of the same after this. Viva Las Vegas comes close to the greatness Blue Hawaii had, but Tom Parker didn't care as he just wanted to hear 'cha-ching'. Elvis just wasn't strong enough to say 'no' to Parker. Elvis was better than the movies he was in, and if he did the remake of 'A Star Is Born', that would've changed everything.
Everytime I watch this, I get happy but also sad at the same time. His performance is very good and it makes me wonder what might could have been if he didn't do all those formula films.
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