STAR the import DVD label has released ‘ELVIS COMING HOME’, which features an all new mixture with brand new edits of Elvis' songs and videos highlighting the fascinating late-sixties period.
This was the period of Clambake and Stay Away Joe but outside the regular films clips there were never any videos created to go with Elvis singles from the time like 'Big Boss Man', 'U.S. Male', or others like 'Too Much Monkey Business', 'Tomorrow is A Long Time', 'I’m Movin’ On' and 'Come What May.'
What STAR have managed to do (as with their classics HITS release "1st, 2nd and 4Ever" that all fans should own) is create NEW video clips using all the Elvis footage available. This includes TV footage, rare photographs, movie clips and personal Home Videos.
So while no genuine "undiscovered footage" is featured it is a real joy to watch and there is plenty of rare home-footage that many fans will never have seen. Plenty of rare photos too!
The 25 featured songs are Guitar Man, Big Boss Man, Edge of Reality, Going Home, Just Call Me Lonesome, Wonderful World, Fools Fall in Love, You Don’t Know Me, Clean Up Your Own Backyard, Rubberneckin’, A Little Less Conversation, It Hurts Me, Let Yourself Go, Power of My Love, Tomorrow is A Long Time, Singing Tree, I’m Movin’ On, Come What May, All I Needed Was the Rain, Charro!, Almost in Love, U.S. Male, Too Much Monkey Business, Stay Away, Almost.
(Right:Rare images of Priscilla and Elvis in 'Come What May')
Of course some songs such as ‘A Little Less Conversation’ and ‘Edge of Reality’ use the basic movie versions but there is always still a little twist added to make them a little different.
Watching this DVD it somewhat saddening to realise how EPE can so easily disappoint fans with their lack of imagination when it comes to new releases. The recent 'The King' DVD hits compile is a case in point. While the original Elvis clips were of course sensational, fans have seen them all so many times before and without a little modern creativity or upgrade in the presentation there's nothing new to inspire true fans.
EPE need to see what fans with a little imagination, love and knowledge of Elvis can do. And these STAR DVDs could really shine a light on brand-new possibilities to show what they could do.
If EPE are working on an Elvis ANTHOLOGY DVD (as rumoured) then it's not difficult to realise that if a bootleg company can come up with something so creative and fun, a company with proper financing and millions of dollars profit from Elvis every year should come up with something even better!
And the STAR label has a very talented editor who sure knows their Elvis!
The first clip 'Guitar Man' of course uses mainly Comeback Special footage lip-synced to the original single - but also features extra footage from Aloha, TTWII, the movies Tickle Me, and It Happened At the World's Fair, Stay Away Joe and more! It immediately demonstrates the inventiveness and fun creativity that makes STAR DVDs so watchable.
While some of the clips such as 'Edge of Reality', 'Rubbernecking' and 'Clean Up Your Own Backyard' mostly use the original movie footage there is always a little variation.
In 'Clean Up Your Own Backyard' for instance all those annoying shots of the audience have been removed and covered with clever inserts of Elvis taken from elsewhere in the movie. This is professional work! EPE should employ this STAR editor. (And no, I don’t know who it is!)
But it is the new specially created videos that are the real key to this great compilation.
- 'Tomorrow is A Long Time' features a delightful compilation of Elvis on horseback (right) and home movies from the era. Including some home-footage that I can't remember having seen before!
- 'I’m Movin’ On' is one of the very best videos with a string of classic films clips of Elvis "moving on" in cars, motor-bikes and even horses. The inventiveness is shown when Elvis sings lyrics....
"Your gonna want your daddy but your daddy will say
Keep movin' on, keep rollin' on"
And there is a witty insert of Elvis and his father from ‘Live A Little, Love A Little’.
As always STAR even manage to lip-sync Elvis singing the song!
- 'Come What May' features a delightful compile of Elvis & Priscilla's home videos and wedding footage. There's some fun footage of Elvis and his snow-mobile at the end and of course the video matches the lyric "I plant a kiss" perfectly.
If EPE ever get round to the ELVIS ANTHOLOGY DVD then they should be watching this!
- 'Fools Fall In Love' is a hilarious compilation of Elvis with his delicious co-stars and his multiple silly on-screen kisses. See if you guess which film is which.
(Right: Elvis wondering what's he's doing in 'Fools Fall In Love')
.Not to forget 'Going Home' itself which is a delicious compilation of Elvis looking the perfect hunk in 'Stay Away Joe'. Elvis sure was good-looking in 1968!
- 'Too Much Monkey Business' is another highlight that made me laugh out loud with its clever compilation of all of Elvis' ridiculously silly moments from his sixties movies.
(Poor old Elvis loses his pants in 'Too Much Monkey Business')
- 'U.S Male' Another sensational compile with the clever editing creating Elvis lip-syncing to the song. There’s plenty of groovy slow-motion work & creative editing. Did I say how good Elvis looked in 1968? He’s a hot-damn US Male! Lots of close-ups too, girls!
And while you may think that you have seen all you need of the Comeback Special there is a stunning 9 minute medley of 'It Hurts Me/A Little Less Conversation/Let Yourself Go/Power of My Love’ with lots of surprises along the way.
The 'Power Of My Love' with Susan Henning and the "grape" scene on the couch is a stunner. (see photo right)
As the backing singers moan "I love you, love you, love you, love you, love you" with both Elvis and Susan both nuzzling together you certainly know what happened later on!
I immediately played it again! This medley alone is worth the price of admission.
So if you like Elvis in the late sixties and want 70 minutes of serious fun and creative Elvis clips with at times him looking his suntanned best then track this DVD down.
Please note that I purchased this DVD, have no idea who represents the STAR company, nor who the editor is.
More DVD screen grabs of our favourite US Male.
(Left from the clip for 'Almost' and right, the U.S Male!)
Overall Verdict: Firstly, if you want unreleased footage of Elvis in concert no doubt in poor-shaky-fan-video quality then this is not for you! However if you want a sensationally fun 70 minutes of handsome Elvis in the late sixties and featuring 25 classic songs many of them with new videos specially created for this DVD then this is an essential purchase.
It’s rare that an Elvis DVD is so enjoyable that it makes me laugh out loud. Elvis looked so great in 1968 and with the imagination and creativity on display here this is a DVD that you will enjoy watching again & again.
WANT MORE? - CLICK HERE to the trailer.
Review by Piers Beagley.
-Copyright EIN June 2010
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