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Wild on the Beach
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About This Film/Cast/Music
Frankie Randall as Adam Miller
Sherry Jackson as Lee Sullivan
Gayle Caldwell as Marsie Lowell
Jackie Miller as Toby Carr
Booth Colman as Dean Parker
Justin Smith as Mort Terwilliger
Russ Bender as Shep Kirby
Jackie & Gayle
Sonny & Cher
Wild on the Beach (1965): A better title would've
"House on the Beach" or "Beach House". I say this because there
really isn't much of the beach shown in this movie. Most of it is
filmed inside the beach house or pertains specifically to the beach
house. Also, the opening song is called "House on the
Beach". It seems a given, but for some reason it's
called "Wild on the Beach", which is also a good title.
This is a fun movie to see and I
encourage anyone who is a fan of great
music and light-hearted silliness to watch it. Released in
1965 by Twentieth Century Fox, this movie was filmed in
black-and-white. It's basically a concert movie with a wacky plot
involving a boys vs. girls battle over a beach house mixed in.
There's a lot of music, and if you like 1960s music (like I do), you'll
love this film.
I enjoyed the whole movie, but
the highlights for me would definitely
be Jackie & Gayle singing "Winter Nocturne" and Gayle's acting,
specifically with housing inspector Mort Terwilliger (played by Justin
Smith). Gayle's got a lot of spunk and she's quite good as an
actress. The Marsie vs. Terwilliger scenes (Marsie is the name of
her character) is very reminiscent of Laurel & Hardy slapstick
Plays the male lead in this good-time movie:
Adam Miller. He's every bit the gentleman, but finds he has to be
a little sneaky when it comes to Lee Sullivan (played by Sherry
Jackson). Adam's the leader of the boys; Lee, the girls. A
friend of Adam's father by the name of Captain Sullivan lends Adam his
beach house while he's going to college: a gentleman's
agreement. What Adam doesn't know is that Captain Sullivan died
in a car accident and his niece Lee inherited the beach house.
The boys don't have a place to stay, and the girls need one. Lee
hopes to make money by renting the beach house out to girls, and girls
generally don't like boarding with boys, so according to Lee the boys
must go! Lee and Adam race each other to get the housing permit
and control of the beach house. Eventually they fall in love, but
they still rival each other throughout the film. It's a cute
rivalry, though, and it doesn't get too extreme...which is good.
After all, this is meant to be a lighthearted, fun film.
Sherry plays the female lead: Lee
Sullivan. I think she's pretty, but her character gets kind of
annoying after a fashion. Why is she so bent on kicking the boys
out of the house? They need a place to stay, too! I don't
understand why the boys and girls couldn't share the house.
Apparently, she must think that there can be no such arrangement
without hanky panky, which is kind of sad. But if she didn't have
this quirk, there wouldn't be a movie.
I think she's great in this movie! Definitely
funny. Marsie Lowell (Gayle's character) is one tough mama
always beating up on some guy, plus she's a Home-Ec major! She
can bake cakes and pies and still whoop up on people! I like it
when she throws the nearsighted college kid into the luggage at the
beginning after he accidentally feels her up. But her best scenes
(acting-wise) are when she's battling Terwilliger (played by
Justin Smith). Over all, I think she's just a fun, lively person
that is perfect for good-time beach movies, such as "Wild on the Beach"
and "Wild Wild Winter".
She didn't have too many of her own scenes in this
movie, but you almost always saw her with Gayle (when Gayle wasn't
beating up on Smith). A funny scene she has on her own is when
she disguises herself as a freshman college boy shaving in the bathroom
in order to fool the housing inspector, Mort Terwilliger. "Hold
it, Mac!". Plus, I think it's cute that her name was Toby in this
show. Toby has always struck me as a really funny name...right up
there with Corky! By the way, her character's complete name was
Plays the "crusty-old-dean"
stereotype to perfection
in this film. As Dean Parker, he's cantankerous, crude, and
perpetually a pain-in-the-butt for our college kid heroes. Plus
he treats his underling Mort Terwilliger like garbage. Parker is
always up to something just to cover his own backside because the
school board has him on a probation of sorts (for screwing up in the
past). In other words, you get the idea that the Dean is not on
the straight-and-narrow. But he gets what's coming to him by the
end of the film. Watch it. I'm not going to spoil it for
In beach-party movies such as this,
there is usually
a really unlikeable character (such as Dean Parker, played by Booth
Colman) and a really goofy, likeable, but not too hip character that's
everyone's foil. Justin Smith plays that character in this film,
by the name of Mort Terwilliger. Throughout the course of the
movie, Terwilliger takes a lot of abuse and he does so pretty much
good-natured. I don't think I'd keep my cool as well if I tripped
over weights, got beat up by a Home-Ec major, or sprayed in the eyes
with hair spray. He's funny throughout the whole movie, always
bumbling, but some of his best scenes here would have to be with Marsie
Lowell (Gayle Caldwell) when they get into mishaps in the kitchen.
Russ plays down-on-his-luck music
Kirby, who is kind of the "dirty-old-man" character in the film.
He's a girl-chaser and likes them young. When we first see him,
he's trying to get into singer Cindy Malone's good graces. She
sees right through him, though, and is less-than-enthusiastic.
The loud sound effects from Lee's beach house ruins his recording
session with Cindy and he becomes too broke to be a manufacturer.
However, he accidentally discovers the music of the Astronauts group
and teams up with the kids to get them on tape recorder. He hopes
to sell a tape of the Astronauts to the highest bidder and regain his
fame and fortune. Kirby actually helps the kids with their beach
house problem and gets everything settled with the college. All
in all, a really cool "swinger" character for this film.
This band is fantastic! They also appear in
Gayle's other movie "Wild Wild Winter"! In this movie they play
two songs on their own: "Rock The World" and "Little Speedy
Gonzales". The first song sounds like 1950s Elvis Presley
rockabilly, and the singer for this song even sounds a lot like early
Elvis! "Little Speedy Gonzales" is the swan-song of this movie, a
nice way to cap it off. It's a real, 1960s a-go-go type
rocker. Plus, Speedy Gonzales is a cool cartoon character that
you'd like to be reminded of when you hear this song ("the fastest
mouse in all of Mexico!"). They also play the music for Sonny
& Cher's number "It's Gonna Rain" (their music is quite good, here)
and for Jackie & Gayle's "Winter Nocturne".
It was surprising to me at first when Russ Bender
started singing in this film, because one doesn't usually think of him
as a singer. He was in a lot of war and sci-fi movies where he
played military leaders and such. Then he starts singing "The
Yellow-Haired Woman" and is really quite good (backed by Sandy Nelson
and his band). It's a funny, feel-good song with clever
lyrics. Plus, the song really fits in with this movie. You
wouldn't think an old man would be cool around a bunch of young kids,
but he is!
Jackie & Gayle-
I LOVE the "Winter Nocturne" song. It's
slow and somber, but optimistic at the same time, even as they sing
about leaves falling and winter coming...because they also talk about
springtime coming again! It kind of reminds me of something the
Mamas and the Papas group would do (or similar artists). They're
both perfect singers and the harmonizing is amazing! The fact
that the Astronauts is their back-up band is another good thing.
Cindy sings "Run Away From Him" which is a good
song, especially for the reverb they use. It has that neat echo
effect. I don't know if I'd like the song as well without the
reverb, because it would sound like any ordinary pop song, but with
reverb it's good. Cindy's a great singer, but she acts like a
total b-word to Shep Kirby (which is the comedy part of her
performance). I like it when she slaps him, "You said it was a
record you were trying to make!". Classic!
I've been a fan of Sandy Nelson long before I first
saw this movie. For those who don't know, Sandy was a very
popular rock and roll drummer in the 1960s with hugely popular tunes
"Let There be Drums" and "Teen Beat" to his credit. He didn't
just play surf-drums, though. Sandy has played all kinds of music
in his career. An album I'd like to recommend to you is his
"Rebirth of the Beat" which is very psychedelic. I'd almost have
to say that the tunes he plays in this movie aren't strictly surf,
either. "Drum Dance" and "Pyramid Stomp" both are tinged with
psychedelic sounds. They're extremely good, in any case.
Sings "House on the Beach" at the beginning of this
film and later in the film "The Gods of Love". "House on the
Beach" is definitely a party song, while "The Gods of Love" is more
like 1940s crooner/Frank Sinatra style. "The Gods of Love" is
meant to be romantic when he's serenading Sherry Jackson's character on
the beach. A very talented singer, no doubt.
Sonny & Cher-
This film was Sonny & Cher's debut.
The Astronauts as their back-up band was terrific.
There are two things that really
stand out in this performance. One, Cher never looks at Sonny
once during the entire song. Two, this is about the most clothes
Cher has ever worn while singing. Ironically, most people who
know about this film or seek it out do so because it was the debut of
Sonny & Cher. Actually, I bought this movie because I wanted
to see Gayle Caldwell in it.
Jackie & Gayle
Sonny & Cher