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SPINOUT (director: Norman Taurog; screenwriters: Theodore J. Flicker/George Kirgo; cinematographer: Daniel L. Fapp; editor: Rita Roland; music: George Stoll; cast: Elvis Presley (Mike McCoy), Shelley Fabares (Cynthia Foxhugh), Diane McBain (Diana St. Clair), Deborah Walley (Les), Dodie Marshall (Susan), Jack Mullaney (Curly), Jimmy Hawkins (Larry)Will Hutchins (Lt. Tracy Richards), Cecil Kellaway (Bernard Ranley), Carl Betz (Howard Foxhugh), Una Merkel (Violet Ranley), Will Hutchins (Highway Patrolman Tracy), Warren Berlinger (Philip Short); Runtime: 93; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Joe Pasternak; Warner Home Video; 1966)
“Strictly for Elvis fans.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

Norman Taurog (“G.I. Blues”/”Blue Hawaii”/”It Happened at the World’s Fair”) helms a mediocre Elvis flick … surprise. Taurog helmed in his long career nine Elvis films. The King’s 22nd film follows the formula of the others and is strictly for Elvis fans. The film’s tagline is “It’s Elvis with his foot on the gas and no brakes on the fun!” It comes with a number of songs by the King that include “Adam and Evil,” “All That I Am,” “Beach Shack,” “Stop, Look, Listen,” “Am I Ready?,” “Never Say Yes,” “I’ll Be Back,” and the title song.

Elvis plays Mike McCoy, a carefree swinging bachelor racecar driver who moonlights as a singer with a touring combo (Curly (Jack Mullaney), Larry (Jimmy Hawkins) and the female drummer Les (Deborah Walley)). In Santa Barbara, he’s involved with three loving females: his drummer Les (Deborah Walley); Cynthia Foxhugh (Shelley Fabares), the spoiled pretty daughter of an overbearing millionaire car manufacturer, Howard (Carl Betz, also played Fabares’ dad on “The Donna Reed Show”), who gets Mike to sing for $5,000 a birthday song for his daughter and then wants Mike to drive for him in the Santa Fe Road Race; and blonde writer Diana St. Clair (Diane McBain), who spies on Mike after choosing him as the model for a book the bast-selling author is writing on the perfect American male. Mike drives his own Cobra 427 sports car (also owns a 1929 Model J Duesenberg), not following the boss’s orders to drive his newly manufactured “Fox Five” racing car, and wins the race. Attending a celebration party, Mike learns the three girls have given up on him marrying any of them. Les falls for a young policeman (Will Hutchins), Cynthia her father’s assistant and Diana is about to snag Cynthia’s dad and become her stepmother. But don’t feel sorry for Mike, he finds romance with the new drummer Susan (Dodie Marshall).

The film takes advantage of the ’60s popular car culture, as it intermixes rock & roll, fast cars and hot chicks with the star presence of Elvis. It, at least, has some humor (a residue left over from Taurog’s Martin & Lewis comedies), moves along at a fast clip and left no grease stains on me.


Dennis Schwartz: “Ozus’ World Movie Reviews”