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The Girl Can’t Help It

Posted by martinteller on February 4, 2011

I didn’t think I’d find a Frank Tashlin movie I could love more than Artists and Models, but here ya go.  Once again Tashlin’s Looney Tunes roots are showing, in this relentlessly enjoyable romp loaded with terrific gags (milk jugs!) and coated in candy colors.  As a celebration of rock n’ roll and other contemporary music, it can hardly be matched, with fantastic performances by Little Richard, Fats Domino, Julie London, Gene Vincent, The Platters, and many more.  It just vibrates with infectious electricity… and even pulls off a few light-hearted jabs at the inherent silliness of the music without deflating its impact one bit.  I am once more surprised by Jayne Mansfield’s ability to transcend her bombshell status and turn in a nuanced performance, with awesome support from Tom Ewell, Edmond O’Brien and Henry Jones (and an all-too-brief appearance by the great Juanita Moore).  The whole film is just a ridiculously good time, threatening to bust out of the frame (literally!) with energy, and not a dull moment to be had.  Even the dumb jokes are at least charming in their giddy stupidity.  I couldn’t help smiling through the whole thing, and I wanted to just leap into that world.  Rating: 10


One Response to “The Girl Can’t Help It”

  1. […] 80. The Girl Can’t Help It (1956, Frank Tashlin) […]

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