Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, November 12, 2015


HEY LET'S TWIST (1961). Director: Greg Garrison.

"I'm paralyzed with fascination."

Widower Papa Dee (Dino Di Luca), who loves to listen to Caruso, owns an Italian restaurant that is barely getting by. His sons Joey (Joey Dee) and Ricky (Teddy Randazzo), who play with a group called the Starlighters, decide to turn the restaurant into the Peppermint Lounge and offer milkshakes (!) with the twist. The seriously weird Zohra Lampert [The Mad Mad Tea Party Affair] plays columnist Sharon, who takes a shine to sexy Ricky, while ditsy Piper Patton (Jo Ann Campbell), who also lusts for Ricky, has to make do with Joey. This is the highly fictionalized story of Joey Dee and the Starlighters, and the Peppermint Lounge where they performed. The character of brother Ricky was made up for the film and to add a little sex appeal for the teenyboppers. Di Luca and Kay Armen as his likable lady friend Angie offer the best performances, but Lampert and Randazzo are also good. Randazzo was mostly a musician, and he had only one other acting credit in Rock Rock Rock! Dee [Two Tickets to Paris] is personable but not much else. He played himself in two movies, both directed by Greg Garrison, but had no other acting credits.

Verdict: Shake that booty! ** out of 4.

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