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Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Mon May 06, 2013 5:04 am

You like it more than I do, Ekenee. That's fine.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Mon May 06, 2013 4:27 pm

Charro: Great title song, bad movie. I can sit through it, but that's it. Elvis ain't Clint Eastwood.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Mon May 06, 2013 8:41 pm

I agree completely with you JerryNodak. I think Elvis after so many bad movies he seemed uncomfortable with a nonsinging role and of course with a not good script, unfortunately.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 12:39 am

JerryNodak wrote:Charro: Great title song, bad movie. I can sit through it, but that's it. Elvis ain't Clint Eastwood.


True, but Elvis could act better than Eastwood could sing.

And a good amount of Eastwoods westerns are average at best.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 1:28 am

Eastwood never made or acted in a poor western, whilst few could be described as being "average." Joe Kidd and Hang 'Em High, certainly. But they're both streets ahead of Charro!, which is a truly dismal picture. But the idea that Elvis was better actor that Eastwood is a singer makes for a daft comparison. Especially when you consider just how talented and diverse Eastwood actually is as a musician. He may not be a great singer, but he is a splendid writer and a hugely talented composer of jazz-tinged musical pieces and multi-coloured orchestral compositions and scores. Some of which are among the most evocative and atmospheric in contemporary cinema. His scores for Changeling and Mystic River are particularly powerful

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 1:34 am

greystoke wrote:Eastwood never made or acted in a poor western, whilst few could be described as being "average." Joe Kidd and Hang 'Em High, certainly. But they're both streets ahead of Charro!, which is a truly dismal picture. But the idea that Elvis was better actor that Eastwood is a singer makes for a daft comparison. Especially when you consider just how talented and diverse Eastwood actually is as a musician. He may not be a great singer, but he is a splendid writer and a hugely talented composer of jazz-tinged musical pieces and multi-coloured orchestral compositions and scores. Some of which are among the most evocative and atmospheric in contemporary cinema. His scores for Changeling and Mystic River are particularly powerful


Good post Greystoke and bang on

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 1:56 am

I really liked Hang em high.

I wouldn't call it an average western.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 3:25 am

greystoke wrote:Eastwood never made or acted in a poor western, whilst few could be described as being "average." Joe Kidd and Hang 'Em High, certainly. But they're both streets ahead of Charro!, which is a truly dismal picture. But the idea that Elvis was better actor that Eastwood is a singer makes for a daft comparison. Especially when you consider just how talented and diverse Eastwood actually is as a musician. He may not be a great singer, but he is a splendid writer and a hugely talented composer of jazz-tinged musical pieces and multi-coloured orchestral compositions and scores. Some of which are among the most evocative and atmospheric in contemporary cinema. His scores for Changeling and Mystic River are particularly powerful



Actually it's not a daft comparison. And I was only responding to another post so keep that in mind.

I saw Paint your wagon, and I enjoy Charro much more.

And further more, I think "hang 'em high" is above average. I like Joe Kidd as well.

I have seen most of Eastwood's work and alot of it great, but he had his share of duds.

Elvis was a very successful singer.
Clint was a very successful actor.

Elvis was an ok actor.
Clint was an ok singer.

Can't really compare writing because Elvis really never wrote much.

I think if Clint had done Charro, everyone would be raving about it.
I don't think its the dud everyone is saying here.

Elvis did some far worse films that Charro.
At the time, it was different for Elvis.
He really though should not have been doing westerns. He started out doing one.
Then he did Flaming star.
I wish he had done the Jack Valentine movie though, at least it would have been a type of role he hadn't done before.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 3:33 am

Charro was boring at best... I'm a Victor French fan so he and Elvis are the only reason I sat through it once... but the story is awful.
And Clint Eastwood in Pale Rider... awesome flick!

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 5:26 am

elvis-fan wrote:Charro was boring at best... I'm a Victor French fan so he and Elvis are the only reason I sat through it once... but the story is awful.
And Clint Eastwood in Pale Rider... awesome flick!



Pale rider is above average. I also love High Plains Drifter.

The Beguiled is a very interesting movie.

I think his spegetti westerns filmed in Italy are very over rated though.
They don't live up to the hype. I thought the first two the stories were terrible, so i never even watched the third.

And I almost couldn't make it through "Unforgiven" .
Too long and draggy. Didn't do much for me.
It could've been tighten up in post production.

What do you think of Ina Balin?

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 5:42 am

I think Greystoke's post is spot on and I'll repeat his statement, Charro is truly dismal. I assume Eastwood would never have signed on for this role but it would have been bad with him too. Elvis could only wish this would have turned out like one of Eastwood's Spaghetti westerns.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 9:56 am

The problem with Charro is it was a low budget quickie western with a bad story, bad script and the production values of a TV movie. Elvis looked great though. If Charro had a bigger budget with a good script and a decent director, it could have been a good movie.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 11:47 am

Elvis didn't even try. His face is like a mask: it never changes expression. You feel like he was depressed or something. No affect.

He could see it was all inferior. He grabbed a railing, and nearly lifted up the entire porch! Everything was cheap. The film was a cheap piece of derivative junk. He knew it.

He realized his Hollywood dreams were over. And he was just 33 years old.

Must have hurt. "A dream deferred." Is a dream denied.

rjm

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I317 using Tapatalk 2

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 12:05 pm

rjm wrote:Elvis didn't even try. His face is like a mask: it never changes expression. You feel like he was depressed or something. No affect.

He could see it was all inferior. He grabbed a railing, and nearly lifted up the entire porch! Everything was cheap. The film was a cheap piece of derivative junk. He knew it.

He realized his Hollywood dreams were over. And he was just 33 years old.

Must have hurt. "A dream deferred." Is a dream denied.

rjm

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I317 using Tapatalk 2



I have said it before and i will say it again, few realize the shocks to his core and the disappointments he endured. He was basically a good guy who lost too many battles.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 3:36 pm

ekenee wrote:
greystoke wrote:Eastwood never made or acted in a poor western, whilst few could be described as being "average." Joe Kidd and Hang 'Em High, certainly. But they're both streets ahead of Charro!, which is a truly dismal picture. But the idea that Elvis was better actor that Eastwood is a singer makes for a daft comparison. Especially when you consider just how talented and diverse Eastwood actually is as a musician. He may not be a great singer, but he is a splendid writer and a hugely talented composer of jazz-tinged musical pieces and multi-coloured orchestral compositions and scores. Some of which are among the most evocative and atmospheric in contemporary cinema. His scores for Changeling and Mystic River are particularly powerful



Actually it's not a daft comparison. And I was only responding to another post so keep that in mind.

I saw Paint your wagon, and I enjoy Charro much more.

And further more, I think "hang 'em high" is above average. I like Joe Kidd as well.

I have seen most of Eastwood's work and alot of it great, but he had his share of duds.

Elvis was a very successful singer.
Clint was a very successful actor.

Elvis was an ok actor.
Clint was an ok singer.

Can't really compare writing because Elvis really never wrote much.

I think if Clint had done Charro, everyone would be raving about it.
I don't think its the dud everyone is saying here.

Elvis did some far worse films that Charro.
At the time, it was different for Elvis.
He really though should not have been doing westerns. He started out doing one.
Then he did Flaming star.
I wish he had done the Jack Valentine movie though, at least it would have been a type of role he hadn't done before.


I also like Hang 'Em High and Joe Kidd, neither of which are without their merits (Joe Kidd's terrifc cinematography, courtesy of Bruce Surtees, always comes to mind), but consider their infuences - especially Hang 'Em High - or the best of what John Sturges, who directed Joe Kidd, had to offer in the genre. They had much to aspire to after the success of Eastwood's films with Leone, which not only redifined the weserner, but came to define a new sub-genre in the Spaghetti Western. If you genuinely like westerns, and haven't seen The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, then you're missing out on a movie that deserves every last bit of its reputation. It's also too easy to say that Eastwood's had his fair share of duds, when such is true of most any actor who's had a long and prolific career. Elvis, unfortunately, ended his acting career on a low ebb at a relatively young age. Eastwood, on the other hand, was only now making his ascent as movie star at the age of 34. And you can look at that in several ways, taking into consideration just how quickly Elvis rose to national and international fame as an actor -- starring in some good films, such as Jailhouse Rock and King Creole, and becoming an appealing leading man through the likes of G.I. Blues and Blue Hawaii. But he closed the door on Hollywood too quickly and too firmly. Especially when the tide had turned away from the formula travelogues and more interesting, if not necessarily "better," material was coming his way.

That Jack Valentine may have been an interesting diversion, perhaps in the Matt Helm mould -- but, on the other hand, it may simply have been a variation on what had come before and was now readily identified with Elvis's on-screen persona. A singing soldier, a singing race car driver, a singing helicopter pilot, a singing fisherman and then a singing spy. I'm not saying that it couldn't have been timely, especially during the height of the Cold War and a post-Bond influx of spy movies that were very much in vogue. But without a script to discuss or finer details to consider, we only have the alternative, which is Charro!. And the problem here isn't necessarily that it was cheap -- the Leone/Eastwood films cost less to produce, as did Django and most of what Segio Corbucci was making at the time. After all, a low budget isn't requisite to making a poor film, especially one as woefully inept as Charro!. As elvis-fan alluded to above, however, the sole redeeming feature of Charro! is actually Victor French -- and a decent marketing campaign that certainly tried to sell the film as something unique and different. A trend that would grow considerably over the course of the following decade, when all manner of exploitation cinema was often sold on the promise of a poster campaign. French, however, was cast as the only three-dimensional and genuinely interesting character in the entire film. And he approached the role of Vince Hackett with some gusto. Elvis, on the other hand, may have (to a degree) looked the part. But he ambled and mumbled through almost every scene. And I don't think this was due to him not caring or having lost interest when the final script was far from what he expected. On the contrary, I believe that Elvis carried the weight of the film on his shoulders, especially if he was under the illusion that Charro! was in any way pivotal for his acting career and truly indicative of the kind of picture he wanted to be involved in. More so, during a time when a new freedom of language and violence was being explored in mainstream American cinema, with the influence of Leone present and very much essential with regards to westerns and action-themed cinema. Elvis, surely, wanted to be a part of that and Charro!, despite its budget, despite woeful production values and irregardless of its narrative, could have been an entirely different picture had it come to the screen with an abandon for all of that, and in its place lusty performances and the kind of action and violence a revenge story like this really needed. But that wasn't going to happen with Charles Marquis Warren producing and directing -- the end result lacking any creativity or visual flair, with no keen directorial flourishes or unique touches. And that's vital when there's so little on paper and not much money to back it up. If Clint Eastwood did refuse Charro!, then he chose to do so for good reason.
Last edited by greystoke on Tue May 07, 2013 4:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 4:23 pm

I remember reading in one of the books by a Memphis Mafia member (cant remember which) that Elvis actually thought they made a pretty good film with Charro, but when he saw the end product he was very upset. It was like 'what happened?' Much of the violence was gone, the nude scene, etc. It could have been a more cutting-edge western but it turned into a dud. Elvis I admit was not great in it. Very stiff and wooden, but the worst actor IMO was the guy who played Victor's French brother whom the film's plot revolved around. Talk about hamming it up. A better cast and director may have saved it a bit. Still, the day of the Elvis movie was over. I sat in a cinema that was more than half-empty watching this film. This film also had the publicity going for it. I heard multiple ads on the radio, 'A Different kind of man, a different kind of role', etc. Didn't help!

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 6:53 pm

Jokerlola wrote:The problem with Charro is it was a low budget quickie western with a bad story, bad script and the production values of a TV movie. Elvis looked great though. If Charro had a bigger budget with a good script and a decent director, it could have been a good movie.

Yes, if it was totally done over with all different elements, it could have been much better. :P :P

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 6:57 pm

epf wrote:

I have said it before and i will say it again, few realize the shocks to his core and the disappointments he endured. He was basically a good guy who lost too many battles.

Unfortunately he didn't wage that many battles. He quietly accepted too many disappointments.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 7:05 pm

I think Charro was a big step back from Flaming Star. Comparing Elvis to Clint Eastwood as actors... well they aren't in the same league. I saw Charro three times and I was completely taken aback how wooden and stiff Elvis was. I also think that in the 70's the perfect role for Elvis could be in A Star is Born (a musical role), not in the "New Gladiators" or other nonsinging roles. Charro to me is the end of the dream that Elvis could play a good part in an nonsinging role. Sorry, but I watched all the 68-69 nonformula movies and I don't think Elvis could be qualified better than an average actor in "Trouble with Girls", "Change of Habit", "Live a Little, Love a Little" or the worst of all, "Stay Away, Joe".

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 8:53 pm

stevelecher wrote:
Jokerlola wrote:The problem with Charro is it was a low budget quickie western with a bad story, bad script and the production values of a TV movie. Elvis looked great though. If Charro had a bigger budget with a good script and a decent director, it could have been a good movie.

Yes, if it was totally done over with all different elements, it could have been much better. :P :P


What I meant was, it was a good concept but just cheaply done and it showed. I remember reading in one of the books that Elvis was excited about this movie because it was a serious non singing role that was sold to him as a Clint Eastwood type western but when he got on the set, he was quickly disappointed when he realized it was just another quick shot, low budget flick with no artistry. That disappointment colored his acting and he just plodded through it to get it over with. The movie looks like an episode of The Big Valley or Bonanza and was probably filmed just as quick on about the same budget.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 9:08 pm

jurasic1968 wrote:I think Charro was a big step back from Flaming Star. Comparing Elvis to Clint Eastwood as actors... well they aren't in the same league. I saw Charro three times and I was completely taken aback how wooden and stiff Elvis was. I also think that in the 70's the perfect role for Elvis could be in A Star is Born (a musical role), not in the "New Gladiators" or other nonsinging roles. Charro to me is the end of the dream that Elvis could play a good part in an nonsinging role. Sorry, but I watched all the 68-69 nonformula movies and I don't think Elvis could be qualified better than an average actor in "Trouble with Girls", "Change of Habit", "Live a Little, Love a Little" or the worst of all, "Stay Away, Joe".


Look at King Creole and Flaming Star, Elvis could be a good actor and I think he had the potential to be a great actor if he had a good director and good material. The problem is, that the movies you cited were all duds to begin with and nothing Elvis could do could have saved them. These movies were shot for a quick buck. They were straight to drive-in material, the equivalent of a straight to DVD or Netflix movie today. No one was trying to win any awards. And so Elvis not only had no incentive he had no time or direction to be a good actor in these fast filmed, low budget B movies.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Tue May 07, 2013 11:22 pm

You're right. But after doing almost a decade so many average musical comedies it was hard to find a good script, good actors and a good director to work with Elvis in a nonsinging role in late 60's. And if Elvis could be in a movie with Clint Eastwood, let's say, do you think that the greedy Colonel ever would accept for Elvis to be second bill? Not even in 1975, with the Barbra Streissand offer, when Elvis future in movies came to zero and Elvis whole career went downhill, the Colonel wouldn't accept his boy to be second best. The sad reality was that Elvis serious movie career ended with Flaming Star and nothing came to revive him as a good actor in serious movies.

Re: Unmade 1968 film - THAT JACK VALENTINE ad

Wed May 08, 2013 4:21 am

HoneyTalkNelson wrote:It's mentioned on Jan. 22, 1968 that the film would be released for Easter, 1969. Prior to work on the special, it's being sold as a musical spy spoof. I wonder if Elvis had a hand in aborting another song-filled comedy?

This Italian poster for DOUBLE TROUBLE gives an indication of how it might have been marketed.

I don't believe there is any connection between National General and the Singer special.

I had never seen this wonderful poster before! Thanks for putting this up. I love it! Wow.....talk about spin doctors.....:-)

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Wed May 08, 2013 8:23 am

Somewhat ironically, Charles Marquis Warren, the producer/director/screenwriter of Charro, had an exemplary career. He produced/created three of the definitive TV westerns of all time...Gunsmoke (ran 20 years), Rawhide (7 years; costarring Clint Eastwood btw), and The Virginian (9 years). So perhaps that's why Elvis was initially excited to get the role. However, Warren was demanding to say the least and often angered his various casts/personnel, only lasting two seasons at the most on those classic series. Charro was his final production.

By the way, Warren's penultimate project was Day of the Evil Gun (1968), starring Glenn Ford and Arthur Kennedy. Warren penned the screenplay. It's the kind of production that Charro should have been for Elvis. Day of the Evil Gun is a brutal, non-conformist outlook at how violence can alter even the meekest of people. Tons of action/violence, even though the protagonist (Glenn Ford) kills no one. It often shows up on television to this day via Encore Westerns and is available via Warner Archive, an innovative made-for-demand DVD program. Definitely worth checking out.

Re: Elvis Lost 1968 Film - MYSTERY SOLVED!

Wed May 08, 2013 3:38 pm

jeremylr wrote:Somewhat ironically, Charles Marquis Warren, the producer/director/screenwriter of Charro, had an exemplary career. He produced/created three of the definitive TV westerns of all time...Gunsmoke (ran 20 years), Rawhide (7 years; costarring Clint Eastwood btw), and The Virginian (9 years). So perhaps that's why Elvis was initially excited to get the role. However, Warren was demanding to say the least and often angered his various casts/personnel, only lasting two seasons at the most on those classic series. Charro was his final production.

By the way, Warren's penultimate project was Day of the Evil Gun (1968), starring Glenn Ford and Arthur Kennedy. Warren penned the screenplay. It's the kind of production that Charro should have been for Elvis. Day of the Evil Gun is a brutal, non-conformist outlook at how violence can alter even the meekest of people. Tons of action/violence, even though the protagonist (Glenn Ford) kills no one. It often shows up on television to this day via Encore Westerns and is available via Warner Archive, an innovative made-for-demand DVD program. Definitely worth checking out.


Your appreciation of Day of the Evil Gun is greater than mine, jeremylr. Although, you're right about Charles Marquis Warren -- his credentials as a writer, director and producer of television westerns is beyond reproach. Unfortunately, this never really transpired to the big screen and feature films despite a few fairly good oaters, such as Tension at Table Rock and Pony Express. Day of the Evil Gun is certainly a more interesting and gutsy offering than Charro!. Which isn't really saying much. It's still very familiar, however, with shades of The Searchers and The Deadly Companions abound -- and perhaps some influence from Hitchcock. But it's the more unusual moments that keep this from being strictly routine. Which is something that I mentioned above, with regards to Charro!. A movie that is routine from beginning to end. Day of the Evil Gun affords a few surprises within the narrative, with the exchanges between George Kennedy and Glenn Ford proving lively and often amusing. Charro!, for the sake of further comparison, was a dour and humourless affair. I do like Day of the Evil Gun, although it's far from being Peckinpah or Leone, and has its roots firmly in television, via Warren and the film's director, Jerry Thorpe.