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Why The Weird--Bizarre Even!--Idea Of ...


Palmerin
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... the movies of Presley, Avalon and Funicello, which were designed exclusively for a teenage audience? Movies with such a limited appeal were bound to become outdated practically from the moment that they were released! The movies of Garland and Rooney were not intended for an exclusively juvenile public, but instead for anybody and everybody who enjoyed musicals and had the money to pay for a ticket.

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Since I don't watch the channel (cord-cutting, you know), I take it this is in response to some current programming initiative?

 

But yes, by the 50's, producers realized that teens actually had money and could buy their own ticket, and that the new hit songs of the day needed their own promotional opportunity too, just like the variety-show songs of the earlier musicals.

It was all hit records in those days, since MTV didn't exist, and that's not even factoring in the new 50's auto-driven popularity of drive-ins.

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Since I don't watch the channel (cord-cutting, you know), I take it this is in response to some current programming initiative?

 

But yes, by the 50's, producers realized that teens actually had money and could buy their own ticket, and that the new hit songs of the day needed their own promotional opportunity too, just like the variety-show songs of the earlier musicals.

It was all hit records in those days, since MTV didn't exist, and that's not even factoring in the new 50's auto-driven popularity of drive-ins.

 

Elvis and the others come on a free channel where I live, and quite often I might add.

 

To understand why these films were made, you have to understand generational eras in the United States. After WWII , the soldiers came home and started families starting what we call the "baby boom". By the 50's and 60's, those babies were teens so there were enough in this demographic to make movies for.

 

And no kid wants to watch what his/her parents watch. They want their own films and stars. Hence, Elvis , the beach movies and the like. The boom generation eventually became the biggest segment of the population therefore, business catered to them then and even now as they reach their later years.

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The first Frankie and Annette Beach movie was, I have read, a huge, huge unexpected hit with the teenage audience.  Then, as it still is today, it's all about follow the money, so they made another and another.  And even transferred the whole structure (music, current dance fads, teenage boy and girl romance) to ski lodges.   No one really thought about or cared about the legacy of the films. 

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I would say that the first one in the series was designed for what was called the "all-family" audience as the cast was topped by Robert Cummings and Dorothy Malone. I wouldn't exactly say they were aiming for teens only with that pairing.

 

The second one had Frankie and Annette billed on top but even there, bets were hedged by having the likes of Buddy Hackett and Morey Amsterdam in the film. Even as late as GHOST IN THE INVISIBLE BIKINI they had those teen idols ;) Mickey Rooney and Brian Donlevy on hand along with Buster Keaton.

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Supposedly, the Beach Party film was originally planned to be a fairly serious drama about juvenile delinquents, roughly in the manner of the current Interns series. William Asher claimed credit for the switch to comedy.

 

Sounds like the whole genre was more of an accidental discovery than anything else.  As in "oh...now I didn't expect that".

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... the movies of Presley, Avalon and Funicello, which were designed exclusively for a teenage audience? Movies with such a limited appeal were bound to become outdated practically from the moment that they were released! The movies of Garland and Rooney were not intended for an exclusively juvenile public, but instead for anybody and everybody who enjoyed musicals and had the money to pay for a ticket.

 

"Outdated"?! "OUTDATED"???!!!

 

Dude, I STILL think these movies are groovy, **** and far out!!!

 

;)

 

(...nah, not really...You're right...they best serve as some sort of time capsule of that era)

Edited by TCMModerator1
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Oh man! I love teen beach movies.  They're so corny but also a lot of fun.

 

I can't speak about the Elvis movies, I've only seen one of them--Viva Las Vegas.  But I'll admit that that film is a lot of fun too and is one of my not so guilty pleasures.

 

I'd watch a marathon of teen movies (especially teen beach movies) over a marathon of horror or sci-fi movies any day. 

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Oh man! I love teen beach movies.  They're so corny but also a lot of fun.

 

I can't speak about the Elvis movies, I've only seen one of them--Viva Las Vegas.  But I'll admit that that film is a lot of fun too and is one of my not so guilty pleasures.

 

I'd watch a marathon of teen movies (especially teen beach movies) over a marathon of horror or sci-fi movies any day. 

 

To me, teen beach movies "are" Sci-Fi. ^_^

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To me, teen beach movies "are" Sci-Fi. ^_^

 

To each his own.  I don't care if nobody else likes them :-) Doesn't bother me any. 

 

As an aside, since he was mentioned earlier in the thread, Mickey Rooney "is" sci-fi to me.  Lol. 

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Supposedly, the Beach Party film was originally planned to be a fairly serious drama about juvenile delinquents, roughly in the manner of the current Interns series. William Asher claimed credit for the switch to comedy.

 

I love those "juvenile delinquent" films too. I'm a sucker for those cheap, trashy flicks every once in a while when my brain needs a rest from serious drama.

 

Oh man! I love teen beach movies.  They're so corny but also a lot of fun.

 

I can't speak about the Elvis movies, I've only seen one of them--Viva Las Vegas.  But I'll admit that that film is a lot of fun too and is one of my not so guilty pleasures.

 

I'd watch a marathon of teen movies (especially teen beach movies) over a marathon of horror or sci-fi movies any day. 

 

I have sat and watched those marathons. Annette's jealous over some misunderstanding with Frankie . Donna Loren gets her solo. The Bikers are ridiculous. Girls in bikinis,  What's not to like ?

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Two things I feel, caused the advent and success of those movies.

 

1.  Money to be made.

 

2.  Hormones.

 

Many of us "boomers" growing up watching THE MICKEY MOUSE CLUB already had a "holdover" crush on ANNETTE FUNICELLO, and couldn't WAIT to see her in a bathing suit on the big screen!  Adding a bevy of bikini clad hotties didn't hurt either.  And I always felt the addition of people like Cummings, Keaton and Rooney were to assuage the aprehensions of parents who might have felt if these "old timers" from THEIR days felt it OK to do the movies, then they must have been somewhat harmless.  Plus, work is work, and all actors know artistic integrity don't pay the bills.

 

The same for Elvis, whose first and original appeal was to PRE-BOOMERS, being that when he hit HIS fame, the "teeny-bops" who slavered over him were probably born sometime BEFORE WWII, or during. The "boom" didn't come about until the war ended.

 

Artistic integrity was NEVER an intention of the movie INDUSTRY.  Making money was, still and always WILL be.  Sure, there have been many "artistic" movies made over the years, but profit-wise, they NEVER do or did as well as mindless escapism.   Or just just telling a good story that EVERYONE can enjoy and/or understand.  Not everyone who watches movies cares to be pelted with complex subtexts.  Most just want to massage their stress and get away for a while.

 

Plus, for the kids going to see those "Beach Blanket" movies, they gave opportunity to see some of the  popular "pop" stars of the day.   One had The Chantels in it, another Stevie Wonder, The Supremes in another, and even another showed us The Dave Clark Five.  AND a lot of "babes" in skimpy bikinis!  Most in the theater when I went to see them WERE guys, and very few girls, who were there mostly because their BOYFRIENDS wanted to see the flick.

 

 

Sepiatone

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"Outdated"?! "OUTDATED"???!!!

 

Dude, I STILL think these movies are groovy, **** and far out!!!

 

;)

 

(...nah, not really...You're right...they best serve as some sort of time capsule of that era)

 

Edited by TCMModerator1, Yesterday, 07:38 PM. 

Edited for Language

 

LOL

 

The moderator here editing out my word "****" reminds me of the first time I used it in front of my parents at the dinner table back in the mid-'60s, and when after using it my mother was aghast at hearing it, and so I had to explain to her that it had nothing at all to with either a female dog NOR any kind woman of ill-repute, and that ALL the cool kids were using it as an adjective to denote something as way cool.

 

(...thank you moderator for bringing that all back to me...you're really ... ..err.."GROOVY"!!!)

 

LOL

Edited by TCMModerator1
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Edited by TCMModerator1, Today, 07:32 PM. 

Edited for Language

 

LOL...some MORE now.

 

And, just can't believe AGAIN our illustrious moderator finds that pretty much innocuous '60s slang term for something really cool is somehow "offensive".

 

(...okay okay, knowing as I do by now how our illustrious moderators "think", yeah yeah, I CAN "believe" it)

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LOL...some MORE now.

 

(...and just can't believe AGAIN our illustrious moderator finds that pretty much innocuous '60s slang term for something really cool is somehow "offensive"!)

 

I reported you. I have sensitive eyes, and that kind of salty language is best kept to your waterfront dives and houses of ill repute.

B)

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"Outdated"?! "OUTDATED"???!!!

 

Dude, I STILL think these movies are groovy, **** and far out!!!

 

;)

 

(...nah, not really...You're right...they best serve as some sort of time capsule of that era)

 

Dargo--

 

How is it you always find yourself at the center of a controversy?

 

Foul language and everything. Forcing the moderator to take action.

 

You should be ashamed of yourself.

 

However, in the interest of freedom of speech, I have to say that you have a right to speak your mind.

 

Now, I should speak my mind.

 

I have always been an admirer of both Annette and Frankie. However, even as a teenY bopper, I thought the Beach Blanket beach party bingo movies were just plain stupid.

 

As an Elvis Presley fan from way back, I protest you putting Elvis in the same category with these Beach Blanket beach party bingo movies.

 

Elvis made a lot of films,and not all of them were great, but some of them were.

 

I may not be a moderator, but I make a healthy protest against putting Elvis in the same category with Beach Blanket Bingo.

 

Thank you, thank you very much.

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You make a good point here, Princess. Yep, although I wasn't the one who initially bunched Elvis with those Frankie and Annette Beach Party flicks(it was of course Palmerin who did in his OP), I did fail to separate the two when I jokingly replied to him with those '60s slang words, and one of 'em evidently considered a "naughty" one somehow by our...well, YOU know who!

 

Yep, there are a few of Elvis' movies which I suppose might be more than just "time capsules of that '60s era", and in some of his better films such as KING CREOLE and LOVE ME TENDER. 

 

(...and re my being "the center of controversy" 'round here...yeah, evidently I AM...but then again, tweaking noses IS often viewed in that manner, ya know) ;)

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