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"There Goes My Baby" (title of a 1965 song) is one of the many movies that deals with the end of an era in this case: the American innocence established between the end of WWII and the murder of President Kennedy. The movie shows us the last day and evening of the class of '65 where the boys and girls are together before they take off to the real world i.c. college, tour of duty in Vietnam, discovering the real America by car, becoming a music-star or a member of the flower-power movement in San Francisco... Each of these students have their hopes and dreams. Each character represents a different aspect of the American society. At the end of the movie not many dreams have come true. The difficulty of this kind of movie is that there are several students that are being followed so each story is very thin spread during the course of the movie. There is no real depth of caracter or background. The movie never explains why these students act the way they act or what their motive is to do something. Nevertheless the performance and drive of each actor is superb especially Dermot Mulroney, Rick Schroder and pre-E.R. Noah Wyle. They are all very convincing in their role and they glue very well together. A great asset of this film is the use of the music from 1965. Dialogue is not needed because the songs of that era say it with more passion and determination than any scripted dialogue could ever do. This movie is a-must-see for everyone who wants to know how it was in 1965 when America lost her innocence. After seeing this movie it seems that the golden sixties were never that golden and the youth had as much trouble as they have today! Highly recommended.
So,much like Steve-O who just posted his review today,I just last night
(3/31)@ 11pm watched this film. Unlike Steve,I like it quite a bit
Although I will agree that,yes,we've gone down this memory lane before at the movies and truthfully I'd never even heard of it. It was pretty entertaining but this particular plot was done on a stronger level in the TV movie "The 60's" a few years back and as mentioned "American Graffitti". Still,I think it could be a good introductory film for young people to watch as a way to teach them about this era.
A great plot idea to set it around the closing of the favorite high-school hang out,complete with one of those fun but at times annoying DJ's (The Beard),who used to talk in rhyme! Places like "Pops" stand as a symbol of the innocence of the previous era that was soon to be lost.
Now,Rick Schroder is a good actor,not great like say Johnny Depp or (I can finally say without laughing)Leonardo DeCaprio. He's almost first billed but doesn't do as much as I though he would. His emotional breakdown at "Pops" was done quite well along with the scene with his character's father.
Pirate is he school's delinquent who is always at odds with Principal Maran (they call him moron of course). The actor who plays the principal is okay but should have played it a bit stronger. Pirate,for being a delinquent,sure is a quiet one...at least until later.
The early days of Vietnam protest and the Watts riots are recreated very well also but are not as graphic,as done in other films. I found it a bit odd to put "Turn-Turn-Turn" by The Byrds over the riot scenes. Could they not find an appropriate song by an African-American act?? I could say the song might be lyrically relevant but musically,it's too light for such scenes.
In the middle of this a young man named Morrisey burns his draft card and is,roughed up by the police and then later hangs himself. The scene that comes later of Pirate and crew (no joke intended)burning the statue in front of their school,is truly the strongest scene in the whole film. I would say the Watts riots as first,but again,The Byrds song kind of waters that scene down.
The young ladies in this movie are good at portraying the females of the time,who are the last generation to grow up with "finish school,find a man,get married & have kids". The actresses do an admirable job and the emotions from them really felt genuine to me.
The music is great of course because,hey,these are classics. Although some have been used countless times before in movies.
Overall it's not a bad little film but I do once again agree,it could have been so much more for a movie depicting the beginnings,of the most turbulent of times,in our country's history. By the way,this movie was filmed & then shelved in 1990.
8 stars because...again..a stronger sense of the mood of times,as they were,would have made it a 10 star. (END)
This movie rocks! I hear that most of the cast look back on this movie and say that they wish they hadn't made it, but I can't see why they would say that. This is a fine example of a movie about the "innocent" years of the sixties, full of emotion, and spirit. It's nearly impossible to find a copy of this, but if you can, it's definatley worth a rent. A remade American Graffiti.
It's the summer of 1965 in Los Angeles. And a group of photogenic high
school students contemplate their lives and their futures in this
nostalgia flick aimed mostly at baby boomers. Teenage angst, emotional
turmoil, and general confusion comprise the fuel for a plot that
centers largely around a colorful burger joint called "Pops Paradise".
Hollywood has been down this cinematic road before, many times. The screenplay here is conventional. Characters tend toward stereotypes. The kids are idealistic; the school principal is unrealistically belligerent and unsympathetic; and Pops has the requisite cool jiving disc jockey. The script's dialogue is fairly poor in that there is very little subtext.
Even so, the film has terrific 1960's production design. One of the main characters drives a black 1957 Chevy, the vehicle icon of that era. And, many scenes occur at Pops wherein a parade of old cars slowly encircles the front entrance. Clothes and hairstyles are typical for that era. Overall quality of acting for the ensemble cast is acceptable. Kelli Williams, in particular, gives a nice performance as a budding flower child.
Arguably, the best element of the film is the rock'n roll music. "One Fine Day", "California Dreaming", "Mama Said", "Barbara Ann", "Loco-Motion", and The Diamonds' "Little Darlin" are among the great songs, together with the title song by The Drifters.
Although the film's screenplay is sub-par, elaborate production design and some great oldies but goodies give "There Goes My Baby" great 60's atmosphere and the realistic feel of a turbulent era that now seems far off and illusory, in retrospect.
I look at this movie, which tries to collect all of this rebel youth
spirit and embody it within a six or seven characters, as most movies
about the 60s often seem to do. The result is often clichéd and I'm
wondering whether, in the end, these movies are encouraging a sort of
myth. Yes, there was the civil strife that lasted at least twenty
years, starting with the culmination of the civil rights movement in
the mid fifties and continuing to the end of the Vietnam War. That's a
long time for a lot of anger, confusion, and energy to come out. And,
of course, it did. But how much of it was done in this sort of way,
this almost ritual arrangement of characters and themes? This movie
made it look like, first, that all of the youth (at least in this town)
were in favor of simply one side of questioning their parents or
teachers (or other's) judgments and rebelling non-stop against that. Is
that the way things went on after being saturated in this struggle for
change on so many fronts (civil rights, the war, the feminist movement,
etc)? Movies like this tend to be less realistic in their efforts to
mark a particular decade, or a particular era, with this desired
representation. And "There Goes My Baby" does with particularly little,
if any, relent.
This is the story of six friends on the eve of their high school graduation in 1965. Post high-school plans for one involves going into the Army, after having enlisted. For two others, it means hitting the road and "discovering this Country" and sort of getting lost in that hippie culture (at least as embraced by the character, Sunshine). For two of them, it's off to college. And for yet another, it means trying to get famous (an odd one out in this particular mix of characters). But, things suddenly change when, in such a short span of time, they each seem to have their little flirtations with the bigger restlessness of the decade (riots, protests, and so forth) that cause them to rethink things (although, some already realize what's what). It just seems to easily, and done with an abundance of corniness that should have been held at bay if this movie was to be as effective as the filmmakers anticipated. There are far too many ultra-patriotic speeches that seem more laughable than dramatic. And as such, it makes the entire film even more ridiculous.
As others may be attracted to the film for the same reason I was, you do get to see a number of well-known actors in their early days. Look for then-unknown Mark Ruffalo talking to "Stick" (Ricky Schroeder) in one scene where he talks about having found someone to buy Stick's Woody (yeah, that sounds funny).
I was a junior in high school in 1965. This movie brought back so many wonderful memories of that time. I saw this movie for the first time this year (2003) on HBO. As soon as the movie concluded, I went to Amazon.Com and ordered the DVD of this movie. I loved the entire movie. The music was great and the story was good with wonderful characters. I actually 'knew' some of those folks way back in 1965. I was one of them myself. I will watch this DVD many times and I am sure to enjoy it each time. I do think you needed to be high school age in 1965 to TRULY enjoy and appreciate this movie!!
It certainly would help if you, (as I was) a teenager during the mid to late 60's to enjoy this movie. The writer and director skillfully encapsulated all the issues of the time into a two hour movie that chronicled one graduation day/eve in 1965. All the emotions, political troubles, moral issues, family belief structures and youthful life styles and were portrayed through the friendship of these few individuals. This movie was one of the most nostalgic films I have ever watched.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Couldn't go to sleep the other night. So I got up, flipped on the tube
& this movie was on.
Film makers bit off more than they could chew. Just as ambitious in scope as "Forrest Gump" was. But Gump read like an fairy-tale where an extraordinarily lucky man guides us through the era. TGMB just relies on tired clichés to tell the story. Almost like a Broadway musical where actors have to ham it up. Every character's purpose was to fill a silly 60's archetype.
Take how we're introduced to Finnegan: Hugging his black maid & receiving a framed picture of MLK. Criminey, talk about heavy-handed. Why not just give him a t-shirt saying "I Heart Black People"?
Sunshine: "Isn't free love groovay, man? Oh no, I didn't have my period."
Mary Beth: "I want to go to Berkeley, not square UCLA." Uh, excuse me? There was nothing square about LA in the 60s. Rather than take the time to demonstrate what made Berkeley unique, we just hear this brat whine about not going there.
Can't even remember the black kid's name. He was just a prop used to show how racially tolerant the other kids are.
Thing is, period pieces don't have to be this cheesy. Take "Dazed & Confused." Look how we're introduced to the football hero, Randall Floyd. We don't first see him on the football field. In fact, we never see him play football. We're introduced to him in class, inviting his nerdish poker buddies to a party.
In "Dazed" feminism isn't a casual by-product of some chick getting knocked up. It's much more organic, more serious than that. It's refined in the ladies' room over a flip discussion about Gilligan's Island. Serious ideas can grow in the most mundane settings. But real life is like that.
Some of the warm comments here note that the themes in this movie are still relevant. I agree! Which is why I feel so disappointed by this piece of Baby-Boomer pornostalgia.
This is my favorite movie of all time. It's an ensemble film about a group of kids who graduate high school in 1965 and what they go through the summer after commencement. The cast includes a very young Noah Wyle, Dermot Mulroney, Kelli Williams (Lindsey Dole on The Practice), Rick Schroeder, and Jill Schoelen. Some critics will inevitably call it too earnest, a hodgepodge of 60s stereotypes, or a rip-off of American Graffiti (which I didn't like nearly as much), but damn it, I love this movie! I accidentally taped half of it off HBO and spent months trying to figure out just what it was. When I finally found it, everything just clicked. I can't comment on its cinematography or its artistic merit as a "serious film," but I highly recommend it to everyone who either grew up amid the social turmoil of the 1960s or just wishes they had.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
There Goes My Baby is another movie dealing with the magical reputation
of the 60s generation. The movie passes in just a short period, but
tries to capture what was going on in the whole decade. The main story
is based on class of youngsters leaving the High School and preparing
themselves to go to the adult life, which involves Universities for
some, Army for others and "just hanging around" for the rest. This
period of time is represented as "The Last Days of Paradise", an
alternative title to the movie.
The plot goes showing the indecision, problems, obstacles and the general crisis lived by each of the many people portrayed. Themes like Vietnam War, racial conflicts, hippie movement, counterculture, parents and sons clash of generation and sexual revolution are portrayed without much depth, usually using one or two characters to explore these facts of the 60s generation, but never going deeper in the questions.
Apart from these subjects, the movie uses a local burger restaurant that will be demolished to give place to a new shopping mall and a radio DJ that will change from AM to FM, broadcasting his program from the restaurant, as symbols of "the end of innocence".
Everything in the movie is used to emphasize the idea of change in the lives of the youngsters, and their lives are have a semi-heroic portrait, including some drama, but after all naive. In the end, the characters start separating, going each one his way and the narrator (one of the characters) talk about the destiny of everyone in the future, adding magic, naiveté and nostalgia to "The Last Days of Paradise", when confronting the future (adulthood) to those days.
Being so, the history isn't deep or complex, the actors are not superb, just competent and it is a movie to enjoy the two hours watching to it and nothing more, but at least grants enjoyment during its length. And the soundtrack is very good.
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