Friday, January 8, 2010

Hail to the King! The Big E Turns 75: G.I. Blues (1960)

We open somewhere near an army base in West Germany, where our focus centers on the crew of an armored tank out on maneuvers -- especially the very familiar looking gentleman manning the gun. Receiving his orders, Cpl. Tulsa MacLean (Elvis Presley) locks on the objective, fires, and then watches as the target is obliterated. With another direct hit to notch on his belt, as Tulsa's bestest bud, Cookie (Robert Ivers), brags up our boy's shooting skills while jamming another shell into the breach, Rick (James Douglas), the tank's driver, agrees with this assessment but thinks Tulsa has even better hand-eye coordination when dealing with the opposite sex. With that established the tank commander, Sgt. "Dynamite" Bixby (Edson Stroll), tries to get his men refocused on the task at hand, but it's kinda hard to stay alert with the constant cross-chatter on the radio about the companies' impending transfer to Frankfurt -- and all the Frauleins found therein. Das ist gut, ja? Ja! And since he'll be too busy saying goodbye to several local ladies, Tulsa breaks the bad news to Cookie and Rick that he won't be able to play with them at the club later. But since their combo, The Three Blazers, worked so hard to get that gig, meaning they can't back out now, with a little cajoling, Cookie gets him to reconsider as the exercise ends. With that, the armored patrol rumbles back to base, but along the way, their tank breaks a track, thanks to the easily distracted Rick and his subplot about some girl named Marla, drawing the wrath of First Sgt. McGraw (Arch Johnson). After berating these goldbricks for goofing off and wrecking Uncle Sam's property, McGraw also demands the $300 dollars Tulsa owes him. Well, apparently, Tulsa's prowess at the con isn't half bad either as he easily gets McGraw onto a different subject -- namely women. And when Dynamite offers to fix his superior up with date later, McGraw eagerly excuses him from the exercise, leaving the other three behind to fix the tread. Seems that compared to Dynamite, when it comes to women, our boy Tulsa is a lowly private ... Yeah, I don't buy that either. Click here to read more.

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