Tag Archives: 1966

Spinout

Spinout is a 1966 musical film and comedy starring Elvis Presley as the lead singer of a band and part-time race car driver.

Elvis Presley stars as dashing Mike McCoy in Spinout. Mike fronts a popular singing group, and he is also the defending champion on the racing circuit.

Fast cars are not nearly as dangerous for Mike as beautiful women, all of whom want to race him down the aisle to marriage. Les, played by perky Deborah Walley, works as the drummer in Mike’s band, and she is extremely jealous of his attention toward other women. Also vying for Mike’s affection is sophisticated Cynthia Foxhugh, played by Shelley Fabares, who is the daughter of wealthy auto magnate Howard Foxhugh. Finally, representing the intellectual type is writer Diana St. Clair, played by Diane McBain, who falls in love with Mike while finishing her book The Perfect American Male.

In an ending that seems to mock Elvis films in general, Mike does not end up marrying any of these women. Instead, he succeeds in wedding them to friends and associates, while he remains free to begin a new romance.

Paradise, Hawaiian Style

Paradise, Hawaiian Style is a 1966 music comedy film starring Elvis Presley. It was the third and final motion picture that Presley filmed in Hawaii.

Rick Richards (Presley) returns to his home in Hawaii after being fired from his job as an airline pilot. He and his buddy Danny Kohana (James Shigeta) go into the helicopter charter business together. But Rick’s reckless flying and his careless negotiations with local women may cost Rick the business and Danny his home.

Disaster looms as Danny becomes overdue on a flight after Rick has been grounded by government officials. Rick must decide if he should risk losing his license forever by going to look for his friend.

Frankie and Johnny

Frankie and Johnny is a 1966 musical starring Elvis Presley as a riverboat gambler. The role of “Frankie” was played by Donna Douglas, star of the hit television series, The Beverly Hillbillies. Elvis gambles with his luck as he goes for a lucky redhead, Nellie Bly, instead of his beautiful blonde, Frankie.

Johnny and girlfriend Frankie are singers on a Mississippi riverboat, which also has a casino. Johnny is a gambler who is down on his luck and in debt.

Johnny and his friend Cully, a musician and composer, visit a gypsy camp to get his fortune told. A lady reads tea leaves and tells Johnny that he will soon meet a red-haired woman who will bring him luck.

Back on the boat, Johnny and Cully meet Nellie Bly, their boss Clint Braden’s on-again, off-again girlfriend. Nellie catches Braden seducing another singer, Mitzi. Since she has red hair, Johnny persuades Nellie to touch his chips for luck. After he wins, Johnny is convinced that the gypsy must be correct.

Frankie finds out and becomes jealous, as is Johnny’s boss. In a bit of musical theatre, Frankie shoots Johnny for dancing with Nellie Bly, while singing Cully’s new song. A Broadway recruiter sees the riverboat show and buys the rights to this new song, suggesting that Frankie and Johnny should work together in New York.

Landing in New Orleans, the musical cast and riverboat crew attend a masked ball. Frankie, Nellie and Mitzi all rent the same Madame Pompadour costume.

Johnny wants the luck of redhead Nellie to win more money, contrary to Frankie’s expressed wishes. Being masked and in costume, Frankie and Nellie switch places. Johnny wins ten thousand dollars at a roulette wheel, but when he kisses the woman he believes to be Nellie, he discovers the switch. Frankie is furious. She throws the ten thousand dollars out the window.

Blackie, who works for the boss, hears Braden drunkenly complain about how he has lost Nellie, so Blackie switches the blank in Frankie’s stage gun for a real bullet. The boss tries to prevent the impending disaster, but arrives at the theatre too late. Frankie has shot Johnny for real. Frankie forgives his gambling as he lies on stage. Johnny then stands up, apparently unhurt. Johnny was saved because he was wearing a lucky medallion that Frankie had given him, which the bullet struck.