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Mike works on a boat in Acapulco. When the bratty daughter of the boat owner gets him fired, Mike must find new work. Little boy Rauol helps him get a job as a lifeguard and singer at a local hotel. Clashes abound when Mike runs into the rival lifeguard, who is the champion diver of Mexico. He is angry at Mike for taking some of his hours, and stealing his woman. Written by
Pat McCurry <email@example.com>
(Mild) fun in Acapulco with The King of Rock and Roll
Elvis Presley was a hugely influential performer with one of the most distinctive singing voices of anybody. He embarked on a film career consisting of 33 films from 1956 to 1969, films that did well at the box-office but mostly panned critically (especially his later films) and while he was a highly charismatic performer he was never considered a great actor.
Some of his films, well a vast majority of the films before 'Girls! Girls! Girls!' (when his films became much less consistent), are actually pretty good and a few of them close to great. Particularly good are 'King Creole', 'Jailhouse Rock', 'Flaming Star' and 'Loving You'. 'Fun in Acapulco' is like 'It Happened at the World's Fair', a decent but patchy effort that ranks somewhere in the middle of his work instead of being one of the best or worst.
Despite Acapulco being more rear/back projections than the real thing, it is still portrayed in a colourful and exotic way. The film is very nicely shot. The music is inconsistent, though still fit well and Elvis sings them beautifully and with soul. The hit unsurprisingly is "Bossa Nova Baby", while the title song, "Mexico" and "Marguerita" are not too far behind.
Elvis is charming, very charismatic and very relaxed. He is well supported by three sensational ladies, with Ursula Andress epitomising sexy glamour just as much as she did in 'Dr No' and Elsa Cardenas and Teri Hope just as sexy and glamorous (neither of the three fare too badly in the acting stakes either), Paul Lukas' scene-stealing and hilariously batty Maximillian and the assured direction from Richard Thorpe (in his second collaboration with Elvis after the infinitely superior 'Jailhouse Rock').
Just for the record, anybody wondering about the acrobatics, they're actually stock material from 'The Greatest Show on Earth' modelled on Cornel Wilde's movements and matched by Elvis. This said, this is very likely not to be an issue and will only really be of significance to anybody who's seen 'The Greatest Show on Earth'.
However, as said not all the songs are great. The rest are decent to forgettable, while "Bullfighter is a Lady" is disposable and "There's No Room to Rhumba in a Sports Car" is even worse than that (only having the unintentionally hilarious title going for it).
'Fun in Acapulco' is also overlong and very slight and formulaic in story, making the energy flag so the film can drag badly as a result. As to be expected, considering that it is rarely a strong suit in Elvis' films with a couple of exceptions ('King Creole' and 'Flaming Star') the dialogue is corny with mawkish sentimentality and humour that sometimes is fun but too often falls flat.
In summary, another decent but patchy middling effort. 6/10 Bethany Cox
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