Album Remarks & Appraisals:
Everyone remembers those Elvis movies: Boy arrives from out of town, boy meets girl, boy sings songs, boy wins girl's heart, boy gets into fight with the local boys and sings more songs, boy loses girl due to a misunderstanding, boy sings more songs and wins girl back. OK, so the plots were pretty much the same, but Elvis was the King Of Rock 'N' Roll, not the King Of Method Acting, and it's the music that really mattered. This two CD set is released to remind the nay-sayers that for every choreographed bar-room brawl, there is always a great Elvis song ready to pop out at any given moment. From the movies Love Me Tender (1956) to Change Of Habit (1969), there are dozens of great songs, 40 of which are compiled on this collection. Hits like 'Jailhouse Rock', 'Love Me Tender', 'Can't Help Falling In Love', 'A Little Less Conversation', 'Return To Sender' and 'Viva Las Vegas' are here alongside lesser known gems like 'Follow That Dream', 'Rubberneckin'', 'C'mon Everybody' and more. Viva Las Elvis!
Though much has been made of the notion that Elvis's success as a matinee idol put the last nail in the coffin of his rock-&-roll rebel status, ELVIS AT THE MOVIES threatens to put the lie to that theory. Listening to this collection of tunes that sprang from the King's films, it's striking to realize how many of his most popular tracks had a big-screen background. The quintessential Elvis ballad "Love Me Tender," the Big House barnstormer "Jailhouse Rock," the kitsch classic "Viva Las Vegas"--they all made their home in the cinema.
Of course, this 40-track compendium is dominated by more obscure tunes. The casual Elvis admirer isn't likely to be familiar with the bongo-driven beach-pop of "Do the Clam" or "Charro," which combines spaghetti-western sounds with psychedelic-cowboy lyrics about "standing alone at the crossroads of your mind." At the same time, esoteric soul-tinged cuts like "Clean Up Your Own Backyard" illuminate an underexposed corner of the Elvis catalog, making ELVIS AT THE MOVIES all the more valuable.