It's not the worst movie I ever saw and obviously some people like it but there are so many far better musicals out there and I found this one to be bad enough that I consider it a waste of money and time. I admit that I think my 4-year old girl might like it -- but she would probably like anything with music and colors -- however lame. My 13-year old son enjoyed watching the "I'm sincere" song with me and we (along with my husband) had a good laugh about how AWFUL it was! So, in that respect, the movie delivered some laughs.
If you love Ann-Margret I say get "Viva Las Vegas" instead and don't watch an "Elvis-like" character -- watch the real thing. The energy between Margret and Presley and their dance numbers in that movie are great -- and while that movie is a little corny too, I thoroughly enjoyed it (unlike Bye Bye Birdie).Read more ›
First the bad news, The film suffers from flat characterization. Most affected is the role of Rosie who is often seen as despicable. All the viewer knows of her is she often flirts to make Albert jealous (even going as far as stripping for a group of shriners. Oh sure, she 'tells' us about the other, nicer side of her personality but we never see it. Similarly, Albert is so obsessed with his mother; we cannot see what Rosie sees in him. When Rosie and Albert finally get back together at the film's end it is because the "Birdie" distraction is over, not because either character had shown any growth. Conrad Birdie is so un-charismatic and untalented that it leads me to have poor thoughts about the time period... Was Elvis ever that boring?
On the positive side, even in a very small role, Bobby Rydell honestly and pleasantly plays the young Hugo. But it is Ann-Margret who easily walks away with the film. She is easily the most charismatic person in the film and gorgeous to look at.
Some of the choreography is very good, even taking into account the non-dancers with big dance numbers. The show went through some serious revisions. Many songs were excised. The song "An English Teacher" went away when Albert's profession was switched to chemistry. The song "A Healthy American Boy" was also excised. The song "What Did I Ever See in Him?" was cut and that is a shame. It continued the relationship set up during the song "One Boy".