Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Monday, 14 April 2014

Blue jean baby ...

BLUE DENIM (BLUE JEANS). A rarity from 1959, this drama from a play by James Leo Herlihy (ALL FALL DOWN, MIDNIGHT COWBOY) plays out in an idealised suburban American home, complete with picket fence and bench swinging on the porch as ideal teens Brandon De Wilde and Carol Lynley confront their unwanted pregnancy. They are such a vanilla couple that the idea of heavy petting seems a bit much let alone going all the way …. 

Macdonald Carey is the army father who has the family dog put to sleep while the son is at school, to spare him saying goodbye to the pet. Mother is pert and busy Marsha Hunt, busy with their daughter’s wedding. No one seems to listen to Brandon when he wants to finally tell them his problem. Carol’s father Professor Williard is that busy character actor Vaughn Taylor. 

These are no rebels without a cause though, but nice normal teens. Warren Berlinger is good as their friend, and Roberta Shore sings up a storm at that ideal hop. When they need a “doctor” they have to go to the “other side of town” (cue sleazy sax) …. Will they go through with the operation or will the parents come to the rescue? It is all nicely worked out, and Herlihy again captures that suburban life perfectly. Director Philip Dunne also captures small town life, as he did in HILDA CRANE (Jean Simmons label) and others. Perfectly late '50s too - another 1959 treat then. De Wilde was of course already a veteran child actor (SHANE and the others as per my profile on him - De Wilde label) and Lynley that charming new ingenue, a rival to Sandra Dee - in favourites like HOUND DOG MAN or RETURN TO PEYTON PLACE.  Her later hits included BUNNY LAKE IS MISSING and THE POSEIDON ADVENTURE, De Wilde was killed in a road accident in 1972 when he was 30 - but had good roles in ALL FALL DOWN and HUD, and we like him in NIGHT PASSAGE and others. If he had lived he would be 70 this year ...

1 comment:

  1. This movie is titled "Blue Denim". Just saw it recently and thought it was a good movie. Always liked McDonald Carey, and Carol Lynley, Brandon De Wilde, and Warren Berlinger, did a fine job as well. I will watch this movie again. Sad to know that Brandon died young. Enjoyed watching him in "Shane".