ROUSTABOUT

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“ROUSTABOUT” 1964.

After a long and stressful day, Mum and I decided to finish off the afternoon by watching a Barbara Stanwyck movie. Barbara Stanwyck has always been my second favorite actress. I’ve collected almost all her films, and even though Mum and I have both exhausted her complete filmography, Mum suggested that we watch “Roustabout” again, which co-stars Barbara Stanwyck with the very handsome Elvis Presley.

Elvis Presley showcases his undeniable talents in this lively musical, that will get moviegoers rocking on their seats. Charlie Rogers ( Elvis Presley ) is a musician, who performs gigs at a tea house. After being involved in a brawl outside the tea house with several college students, Charlie is immediately fired from the gig and spends the night in prison. The next morning he hits the road on his motor cycle. Shortly after he is slightly injured in an accident, which damages his bike in the process. During the incident he meets carnival owner Maggie Morgan ( Barbara Stanwyck ). Maggie provides Charlie with accommodation and a job at her carnival while his bike is getting repaired. Charlie begins to draw large crowds and soon he becomes an attraction with people flocking to the carnival just to see his act. Maggie recognizes Charlie’s musical ability and realizes that he is a hit, so she offers him full time work at the carnival. After an altercation Charlie leaves and pursues employment with rival carnival producer Harry Carver. Now that Charlie is gone the carnival is losing patrons, and Maggie is facing bankruptcy. When Charlie learns of Maggie’s situation he returns and saves the day.

I’ve always considered this film my favorite Elvis movie, not just because of Barbara Stanwyck, but because of the film itself. With a plausible plot and musical numbers that epitomizes Elvis’s talent, this film is a joy to watch. Barbara Stanwyck also delivered a fine performance in which was to be her second last movie. It might not be known as Barbara’s greatest role, but I thought that she was well suited for the part of Maggie. After this, Barbara continued her illustrious career to achieve altitudinous accolades in “The Big Valley” and “The Thorn Birds”.

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