New Recipe: HOW TO STUFF A WILD BIKINI (AIP 1965)


cracked rear viewer

HOW TO STUFF A WILD BIKINI, the sixth entry in American-International’s “Beach Party” series, attempts to breathe new life into the tried-and-true  formula of sun, sand, surf, songs, and corny jokes. Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello are still around as Frankie and Dee Dee, but in this go-round they’re separated; he’s in the Navy stationed on the tropical island of Goona-Goona, while Annette has to contend with the romantic enticements of Dwayne Hickman .

Frankie’s part amounts to a cameo, enlisting local witch doctor Buster Keaton (!!) to keep those girl-hungry beach bums away from Dee Dee (while he frolics unfettered with lovely Irene Tsu !). Keaton’s magic ain’t what it used to be, so he has his daughter conjure up a knockout named Cassandra, who first appears on the beach as an animated bikini. All the boys go ga-ga for Cassandra, including a go-go ad man named Peachy Keane…

View original post 455 more words

Secret Agent Double-O Dino: THE SILENCERS (Columbia 1966)


cracked rear viewer

silence1

Out of all the James Bond-inspired spy spoofs made in the Swingin’ 60’s, one of the most popular was Dean Martin’s Matt Helm series. Based on the novels of Donald Hamilton, the films bore little resemblance to their literary counterparts, instead relying on Dino’s Booze & Girlies Rat Pack Vegas persona. First up was 1966’s THE SILENCERS, chock full of gadgets, karate chops, and beautiful babes, with sexual innuendoes by the truckload.

lovey

Our Man Matt is a semi-retired agent of ICE (Intelligence and Counter-Espionage) living in a Playboy Mansion-style pad, and working as a globe-trotting photographer. He’s luxuriating in his bubble bath pool with sexy secretary Lovey Kravezit (“Lovey Kravezit? Oh that’s some kinda name!”) when former boss Mac Donald calls. Evil spy organization Big O (Bureau for International Government and Order) is once again plotting world domination, and the reluctant Helm is pulled back into service.

silence3

Matt is teamed with his former partner Tina…

View original post 747 more words

What Lisa Watched Last Night #100: How To Stuff A Wild Bikini (dir by William Asher)


Last night, I watched the 1965 beach film, How To Stuff A Wild Bikini.

Why Was It Watching It?

Last night, I was in a motel room in San Antonio.  Now, as I’m sure we all know, one of the great things about staying in a motel is that you get a chance to discover all sorts of strange television stations that you otherwise may not have known existed.  It was while flipping through these odd  stations that I came across the final ten minutes of Dr. Goldfoot And The Girl Bombs.  Dr. Goldfoot was followed by How To Stuff A Wild Bikini.

What Was It About?

Oh Lord, where to begin?

Okay, so Frankie (Frankie Avalon) is serving in the U.S. Navy and has been assigned to Tahiti.  However, he’s worried that his girlfriend Dee Dee (Annette Funicello) might not stay true to him while he’s gone.  Why he thinks that is a good question because, seriously, Dee Dee really doesn’t seem to be the type to cheat.

Frankie goes to the local witch doctor (played by Buster Keaton) who casts a spell that causes a magic bikini to appear on the beaches in California.  “Man,” one surfer says, “dig that wild bikini!”  “A bikini ain’t nothing without the stuffing!” his girlfriend replies.  Suddenly, Cassandra (Beverly Adams) appears, providing the “stuffing” for the magic bikini.  Cassandra has been sent to the beach to keep an advertising executive (Dwayne Hickman) from stealing Dee Dee from Frankie.

Oh!  And the witch doctor also turns Frankie into a pelican so Frankie can fly back to the beach to keep an eye on Dee Dee.

And Mickey Rooney is in this movie!

And there’s a motorcycle gang!

And … it’s a musical!

What Worked?

This was exactly the type of mid-1960s youth film that I like almost despite myself.  Plotwise, it was pretty incoherent.  Acting-wise, it was nothing special.  The songs were not memorable.  The attitudes were sexist.  The entire film felt cheap.  And yet, it was so weird and energetic and sincerely silly that there was no way I couldn’t like it.  If nothing else, watching this film is probably as close as I’ll ever get to experiencing 1965.

What Did Not Work?

After having seen several of his silent films on TCM, it was a bit sad to see how Buster Keaton ended his career.

“Oh my God!  Just like me!” Moments

Cassandra had red hair, just like me!  Redheads unite!

Plus, I’ve been told that I look good in a wild bikini.

Lessons Learned

A bikini ain’t nothing … without the stuffing!