It Happened at the World's Fair (1963) starring Elvis Presley, Joan O'Brien, Gary Lockwood, Vicky Tiu, H.M. Wynant, Kam Tong, Kurt Russell directed by Norman Taurog Movie Review

It Happened at the World's Fair (1963)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Joan O'Brien and Elvis Presley in It Happened at the World's Fair (1963)

Elvis Has All the Fun of the Fair

They may not make much but Mike (Elvis Presley - Kid Galahad) and Danny (Gary Lockwood - Wild in the Country) made enough working as crop dusters but unfortunately Danny's love of gambling sees them plane-less when the law catches up to them. With no hope of earning money they start hiking and get picked up by Walter Ling (Kam Tong) and his niece Sue-Lin (Vicky Tiu) who are heading to the Seattle World Fair. When Walter has to rush off on business Mike agrees to show Sue-Lin around the fair where after Sue-Lin eats too much they end up at the medical room where Mike meets the attractive nurse Diane (Joan O'Brien - Six Black Horses) and immediately starts flirting not with much success as Diane is immune to his advances. That doesn't deter him and comes up with various schemes to try and get a date with her.

"It Happened at the World's Fair" has two things going for it, it looks great and it features the iconic scene of a young Kurt Russell kicking Elvis in the shins. But beyond that there isn't a great deal to say as "It Happened at the World's Fair" is pretty standard fair which runs to the Presley movie formula of Elvis being a ladies man, he sings a few songs, gets on with young children and ends up going after one woman in particular. What is a shame is that when it comes to the various songs which Elvis sings on a surprisingly frequently basis they are mostly forgettable numbers which sounds great but fail to stick.

Kurt Russell and Elvis Presley in It Happened at the World's Fair (1963)

So what does that really mean well "It Happened at the World's Fair" will appeal to those who remember the Seattle World Fair as it will have some nostalgic charm. And of course it will appeal to fans of Elvis who does a good job of making those forgettable songs pleasant to listen to. In fact it has to be said that Elvis looks like he is enjoying making this movie not something you can say about many of the movies which followed and you could say that it is one of the last movies he made where he was trying. But beyond that and the iconic scene of Kurt Russell kicking Elvis's leg it is just an Elvis formula movie.

What this all boils down to is that if you are a fan of Elvis "It Happened at the World's Fair" is pleasant enough but not a great movie. The biggest problem is that despite Elvis looking like he is having fun and sounds great the songs he has to sing are forgettable as is the story.