Tuesday, December 21, 2010
The Millie is Disowning a 60's Teen Surfer Movie.
(Please do take note that this coming from someone who thoroughly enjoys Dr. Goldfoot and His Bikini Machine.)
I adore my mind-smushing entertainment of the 60's. I really do. I welcome almost any cheaply-made, poorly written, horribly acted film with open arms.
But, this was seriously just pathetic.
First problem: James Darren.
I am NOT a fan of James Darren. I tolerate him in Gidget and Gidget Goes Hawaiian because of the OTHER people starring in those films. In this movie he was just bloody annoying. Usually, James Darren takes the films he stars in QUITE seriously. He's always trying to insert some "dramaticness" into otherwise perfectly mindless perfection. In this movie, he was almost the complete opposite. He was stinkin' trying to be Frankie Avalon. He even had his haircut (The Frankie cut is copyrighted. People are not supposed to steal it. ;-D). But, James Darren is NOT Frankie. Frankie always comes across as realizing, that, yes he is in spaceship with a chimpanzee (see: Sergeant Deadhead) and yes, he realizes his character is a complete idiot. That's why he's so cool. James Darren is not cool.
That's another problem: This movie tried to almost completely copy the AIP formula.
Now, I love tons of Mind-Smushing Entertainments, not just AIP stuff (Columbia made a lot of awesomeness too). But, this was a pretty obvious rip-off of the Beach Party films. They took all the random pieces and just smashed them back together, but it was weird how they did it. It was like someone said, "Hey, the Beach Party movies have this many minutes of surfing, this many minutes at the 'hang-out' listening to the unfunny comedian try to be funny, this many minutes of conflict between main girl and guy...." Because, all the surfing was smooshed into one long montage. We had to listen to Woody Woodbury go one for like 20 minutes (who the heck is Woody Woodbury?!). And all the conflict is confined to a small space of time.
It was just weird.
Good parts of the movie: Well, the side-kicks (who weren't really side-kicks after the first two minutes, because someone forgot to write them back in) were stinkin' awesome! Nancy Sinatra (pre-Boots, with dark brown hair) and GILLIGAN (I'm sorry, but I never call Bob Denver anything but Gilligan).
And, another thing. HOW MUCH DID PEPSI PAY TO HAVE THIS MOVIE MADE?! It was like one long commercial. Everywhere you looked the Pepsi logo appeared (it was like a creepy nightmare or something...;-D) and people were singing Pepsi's motto...
Anyways. I hereby declare that this movie is no longer a part of the Mind-Smushing Canon. Take note students of the genre.