Fun In Acapulco
Release Date: Nov. 27, 1963 - US

Fun in Acapulco
Elvis Presley plays Mike Windgren, an American working as a boat hand  who falls afoul of the owner's spoiled teenage daughter in this lighthearted film set in Mexico. The girl  manages to get Mike  fired, so he finds new work as a lifeguard and singer at a resort hotel in Acapulco. But before long, he raises the ire of the hotel's main lifeguard, Moreno, who just happens to be Mexico's champion diver.  Not only has Mike's lifeguarding cut into Moreno's work hours, but  his love life as well. Marguerita Dauphin, played by Ursula Andress, falls for Mike and  jealousy gets the best of Moreno.  But it seems Moreno will have the last word when it is discovered that Mike was once a trapeze artist who accidentally let one of his companions slip to their death. Flashbacks to the accident leave Mike wobbly, especially when he climbs up to the high diving board at the hotel. However, there is a happy ending when Mike fills in for the injured Moreno and jumps off a dangerous cliff to impress a visiting American astronaut. A subplot involves a precocious 10-year-old young Mexican boy who becomes Mike's talent agent and negotiates  higher fees for Mike's entertainment performances.

Elvis is  in top form in this film and the Latin dance songs give the movie a lively pace. Popular songs in the movie include Bossa Nova Baby, Marguerita, Guadalajara, Surely But Surely and the title track, Fun In Acapulco. Roving mariachi bands, scenic Mexican vistas and the luxury resort hotel provide the perfect backdrop for Elvis. Of course, he was the King and fans streamed to the movie, not for the plot, but to hear and see him sing his popular songs.

The film was produced by Hal Wallis, written by Allan Weiss and directed by Richard Thorpe. With a running time of only 90 minutes, the thin storyline works well enough to let Elvis perform his tunes and leave the audience in a happy mood. The film was shot in early 1963, but released just a few days after the assassination of JFK.  It was a welcome relief from the real world for a nation  still in shock over the death of their President.

Copyright: Peter Fokes (2003)
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