Movie Mom

Movie Mom


Gidget (3-Pack)

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Not rated
Profanity:None
Nudity/Sex:Some sexual references, very mild by today's standards
Alcohol/Drugs:Some drinking
Violence/Scariness:Mild peril
Diversity Issues:None
Movie Release Date:1959
DVD Release Date:July 5, 2011

A new DVD 3-pack of all three “Gidget” movies comes out today, and they’re worth another look, especially the 1959 original with Sandra Dee and James Darren.  Dee plays Francie, a sheltered and somewhat naive girl who thinks that it is still to make a fuss over boys.  But she is very interested in this new all-male activity on the beach called surfing and the cusp-of-the-60’s pre-counter culture guys who are devoted to it.  Their leader is played by Cliff Robertson as a pilot who is taking a break from real life to live on the beach (literally).  They take her on as something of a mascot, calling her Gidget (girl plus midget), and everybody has some growing up to do.  It’s probably not as sugary as you recall and it holds up pretty well.  The story, by the way, was inspired by the daughter of the author, Frederick Kohner.  You can see the real-life Gidget, still surfing, in the wonderful documentary, Step Into Liquid.

In the first sequel, “Gidget Goes Hawaiian,” Deborah Walley takes over for Dee and Darren returns.  A romantic misunderstanding arises when a mean girl spreads a rumor that Gidget and her boyfriend have gone what in those days was called “all the way.”  Everything is straightened out and Gidget’s good girl reputation is protected.  Watch for a very cute dance number with Broadway hoofer Michael Callan, the original Riff in the stage production of “West Side Story.”

The third episode is the weakest, with Cindy Carol as Gidget and a silly jealousy story, but the wonderful Jessie Royce Landis is a treat as something of a drowsy chaperone.  I still think of this movie whenever I hear the names Paolo and Francesca.

And don’t forget the Gidget television series, starring Sally Field, which included a guest-star appearance from her fellow future Oscar winner Richard Dreyfuss.



Previous Posts

Does PG-13 Mean Anything Anymore?
The Washington Post has an article about a new report from the American Academy of Pediatrics, "Parental Desensitization to Violence and Sex in Movies," with some disturbing conclusions about parents' ability to make good decisions about the impact some media may have on their children. This is not

posted 8:00:58am Oct. 25, 2014 | read full post »

Is E-Reading to Kids the Same as Analog Reading?
The New York Times asks, Is E-Reading to Your Toddler Story Time, or Simply Screen Time? In a 2013 study, researchers found that children ages 3 to 5 whose parents read to them from an electronic book had lower reading comprehension than children whose parents used traditional books. Part of th

posted 8:00:40am Oct. 25, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: Todd and Jedd Wider about the Bullying Documentary "Mentor"
Producers Todd and Jedd Wider generously took time to answer my questions about their documentary, "Mentor," the story of two teenagers who committed suicide following relentless bullying. The film, which received Honorable Mention for Best Documentary Feature at the 2014 Woodstock Film Festival th

posted 3:56:57pm Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Clip: Tinkerbell and the Legend of the NeverBeast
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/ApzHJhZz2JQ" frameborder="0"] The latest in Disney's animated Tinkerbell series adds Ginnifer Goodwin to the cast. Coming in March of 2015, it explores the ancient myth of a mysterious creature whose distant roar sparks the curiosity

posted 1:23:59pm Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: "Avatar" Villain Stephen Lang on Playing a Good Guy Coach in "23 Blast"
Stephen Lang is best known for playing the villain in "Avatar." But in "23 Blast," based on the real-life story of Travis Freeman, a high school football player who lost his vision but stayed on the team, Lang plays a good guy, the coach who encouraged and supported him. I talked to Lang about actin

posted 5:56:30am Oct. 24, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.