Charlie Rogers is a leather-jacketed biker who's fired from a singing engagement after getting into a fight with a group of college toughs. While riding his cycle to the next gig, an irate ... See full summary »
Elvis is a singing rodeo rider who drifts into an expensive dude ranch patronized by wealthy glamour girls. The owner, Vera Radford, hires Elvis as a stable man. Pretty physical fitness ... See full summary »
Mike and Danny fly a crop duster, but because of Danny's gambling debts, a local sheriff seizes it. Trying to earn money, they hitch-hike to the World's Fair in Seattle. While Danny tries ... See full summary »
Rick Richards is a helicopter pilot who wants to set up a charter flying service in Hawaii -- along the way he makes some friends, including a young Hawaiian girl and her father, romances Judy Hudson, and sings a few songs.
Michael D. Moore
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 ... See full summary »
When he completes his military service Walter Gulick returns to his birthplace, Cream Valley, New York. He was orphaned as an infant and grew up elsewhere but always wanted to return to ... See full summary »
Elvis Presley is in fine form as singer Rusty Wells, who is hired by Big Frank to watch over his daughter, Val, while on her first girly holiday. Much mayhem ensues when heart throb Romano tries his luck with the hapless girl, and Elvis et all have to intervene. Written by
Paul Batey <firstname.lastname@example.org>
When Elvis is on the beach playing the intro to "Do the Clam," the sound is clearly from an electric guitar, but when Elvis is shown playing the guitar, it's a regular acoustic guitar, which sounds nothing like an electric. See more »
[as they walk into the Kit Kat Club after the fight]
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Nightclub singer Elvis Presley (as Rusty Wells) is hired to chaperone sexy Shelley Fabares (as Valerie Frank), with predictable results... While it was not strong enough to have be trumpeted as a significant improvement at the time, "Girl Happy" is a cut above the (then) average Presley movie. Most importantly, director Boris Sagal, along with the writing team of Harvey Bullock and R.S. Allen, effectively make more of a situation comedy with Elvis music, than the more often used, and vacuously plotted, "Elvis travelogue" with tunes. The comedy is well-paced, nicely played, and includes some genuinely funny moments.
Ms. Fabares' innocent sexuality compliments Presley, and they play very well on screen together. Fabares was understandably invited to co-star in additional Presley movies (with mixed results, due to weakening material). Also very good are Elvis frantic band-mates Jimmy Hawkins (as Doc), Gary Crosby (Andy), and Joby Baker (Wilbur). Fabares and Mr. Hawkins had been a cute teenage couple on "The Donna Reed Show". Mr. Crosby was one of Bing's sons (which turned out to be less fortunate than you'd think). And, Mr. Baker was in a regrettably short-lived Dick Van Dyke-type comedy called "Good Morning World".
MGM wisely used RCA's soundtrack studio record takes for "Girl Happy" (for the most part). In the past, there were sometimes completely separate versions for film and record, with the lamer versions making the film. Presley recorded the "Girl Happy" songs in June 1964; in hindsight, these and the just completed "Roustabout" were the last gasp of Presley as a dependable pop soundtrack singer. Critics weren't enthusiastic about his 1960s film songs, but there were scattered gems throughout. Nothing herein approaches "Return to Sender", but there are no real dogs, either.
The speeded-up vocals evident on "Girl Happy" were not uncommon; recording stars and record companies routinely speeded-up recordings. In the 1960s, many radio stations speeded up every record they played; this way, they could play more records, and get in more commercials. Many old TV shows are speeded-up, also but, back to Presley: His next film, "Tickle Me", featured no newly recorded soundtrack songs. After a long period of inactivity, he recorded "Harum Sacrum", the first wholly substandard soundtrack of his career. That was followed by "Frankie and Johnny". So, dig right in and "Do the Clam".
****** Girl Happy (3/27/65) Boris Sagal ~ Elvis Presley, Shelley Fabares, Jimmy Hawkins, Gary Crosby
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