This week on Turner Classic Movies, they’re celebrating Spring Break by running all kinds of beach movies each evening Monday through Friday, April 16-20.
It all starts with Where the Boys Are (1960, Monday, 8 PM ET), one of the classics with its edgy-for-the-times premise — a girl thinks you have to fool around before marriage if you want dates! — and its potboiler plotlines — if you’re too easy, you risk getting killed! Some of the points are just plain silly, such as Frank Gorshin as a jazz musician blind without his glasses, or Paula Prentiss concerned about finding a boy taller than she is to settle down with, but the scenery is gorgeous, and this is the kind of film that gave Fort Lauderdale its reputation.
The night continues with three Elvis movies prominently featuring the beach; in order, they’re Girl Happy, Blue Hawaii, and Clambake. I don’t get the appeal, myself.
Tuesday takes us surfing with two Gidget movies; Ride the Wild Surf (1964, Tuesday, 11:30 PM ET — Fabian, Shelley Fabares, Tab Hunter, AND Barbara Eden!); and something I have to see called It’s a Bikini World (1967, Wednesday, 3 AM ET), which stars Deborah Walley and Tommy Kirk, who were also involved in several of the classic Frankie & Annette beach movies (see below). She’s a scientist, he’s a playboy who poses as his own nerdier brother for a second chance at her. Goofy!
Wednesday night leads off with The Girls on the Beach (1965, 8 PM ET), which is forgettable except for the presence of the Beach Boys, who are shown performing and also provide the title song.
Thursday brings the classic beach party lineup, with the AIP Beach Party (1963), Muscle Beach Party (1964), Bikini Beach (1964), Beach Blanket Bingo (1965), the rare Pajama Party (1964, sans Frankie), and the two Dr. Goldfoot movies. (Sadly, no How to Stuff a Wild Bikini or Ghost in the Invisible Bikini this week.)
Friday wraps up the week with a different kind of break, the ski vacation. Ski Party (1965, 8 PM) is another Frankie Avalon-chasing-girls flick, this time with Dwayne Hickman, although oddly, they spend a lot of time in drag. Get Yourself a College Girl (1964, midnight) co-stars Nancy Sinatra as a secretly married chick who only wants to spend the weekend shacked up with her husband.