Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Beach Party (1963)

Director: William Asher

Writer: Lou Rusoff

Composer: Les Baxter

Starring: Robert Cummings, Dorothy Malone, Frankie Avalon, Annette Funicello, Morey Amsterdam, Harvey Lembeck, Eva Six, John Ashley, Jody McCrea, Dick Dale and the Del Tones, Andy Romano, Vincent Price

More info: IMDb

Tagline: When 10,000 kids meet on 5,000 Beach Blankets ... something's bound to happen!

Plot: Anthropology Professor Robert Orwell Sutwell and his secretary Marianne are studying the sex habits of teenagers. The surfing teens led by Frankie and Dee Dee don't have much sex but they sing, battle the motorcycle rats and mice led by Eric Von Zipper and dance to Dick Dale and the Del Tones.

My rating: 5/10

Will I watch it again?  No.

I'm not the target audience for these beach flicks but I will watch them all but only once.  If they were made post-1980 I wouldn't.  There's something about these movies that came at the right time to be able to watch 50 years later and still be watchable on some level.  This was the first of a few starring Avalon, Funicello and Lembeck.  I'm a big fan of Lembeck so there's that excuse.  I also dig Morey Amsterdam and Robert Cummings.  But the big reason I was eager to see this was for Vincent Price.  THE HELL?  He's only in it for about ten seconds, a couple of minutes before the end credits.  What a cheat.  It's also the only time I laughed.  The songs are forgettable (unlike BEACH BLANKET BINGO (1965), a better film and memorable tunes).  The comedy in these things is about as broad as it gets and just about every character is a live action cartoon.  It does have a certain level of silly fun if you're inclined.  The MGM DVD has a nice anamorphic widescreen print & trailer, the only extra.

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