Monday, August 16, 2010

Elvis On Tour – Now And Then

Today, on August 16, I'm going to commemorate Elvis by watching his last film, Elvis On Tour, recently released on DVD/Blu-ray. But before I do that I'd like to tell you about the first time I saw it.

It must have been in the early or middle 80's. My parents had bought a caravan, and that's how we spent the vacation: on the road visiting different sights and places.

That particular summer the Swedish Television screened “rain movies” during the afternoon. These were feature films usually a bit old, supposedly to be shown if it was raining and one had to stay inside. Thinking about it right now, I'm pretty sure “rain movies” were shown whether it was bad weather or not, because what if it rained in the north and not in the south?

Now, one day I read in the paper that the “rain movie” was going to be Elvis On Tour. Needless to say, I was excited, as was my younger brother, who also digged Elvis. We told our parents in no uncertain terms that we had to park that caravan in good time before the film was to begin, so that we could turn the antenna around and try to get a sharp picture, something that wasn't always an easy task.

My parents, being very understanding folks, even headed for higher ground so that the TV signal would be stronger. An hour or so before the movie was to begin, we were parked outside a monastery, and went to work trying to find a decent picture on the tiny black and white television set.

I'm happy to report that we succeeded, and after all these years I can still recall the excitement when the screen showed a big clock where the hands were approaching three o' clock, together with a text that read: “15:00 - Elvis On Tour.” I also remember the opening “Johnny B. Goode” sequence and how cool I thought the slow-motion effect was. (Maybe that's another reason why I was so disappointed when it was announced that Warner Home Video had replaced it with “Don't Be Cruel” on the DVD/Blu-ray release.)

All in all, it was a fantastic “rain movie” and it will be great to watch it again tonight – with one big difference. This time it will be in color!


Mårtenbrother said...

And with Don't Be Cruel!
Great post, Thomas! I think it also was shown in Sweden during the Christmas holidays in January, 1985.

Debbie W. said...

I just purchased the new Elvis Presley Masters Collection. It has all of his best music. I just love listening to these CD's day & night.