153 of 164 people found the following review helpful
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away....,
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This review is from: The Long, Long Trailer (DVD)
Watching the Lucille Ball/Desi Arnaz film "The Long, Long Trailer" some 50+ years after it was made, is a rather surreal experience. By 1953, The "Baby Boom" was indeed booming, tract housing was all over the place like crab grass, trailer parks multiplied like jackrabbits, and Americans were inundated with the wonders of "space age" technology. Big, flashy-looking cars, refrigerators, TV sets, "streamlined" furniture, and snazzy clothes were the things that everyone wanted to have. It was as if America wanted to wipe away its gritty, unglamourous past and face the space age all polished and waxed and Simonized. To see Eisenhower's America as depicted by MGM in better-than-real-life Technicolor and filmed largely on MGM's backlot (interspersed with location photography of Yosemite Park,etc) I feel like I'm watching home movies that were shot in a suburb of a distant planet! "The Long, Long Trailer" was made to capitalize on the overwhelming popularity of TV's "I Love Lucy", which finally made a star of 40ish Lucille Ball, who had never really achieved "big stardom" in the 20 years she had been in showbiz. So, if you REALLY loved Lucy, you could go and spend money to sit in a theater and watch Lucy and Desi on a big screen in an "Air-Cooled" theater in COLOR, and with no commericials! This film has always been a favorite of mine, ever since I first watched it with my sister on our parents' blonde wood console black-and-white TV back in the mid 1960s. See Lucy fall in the mud (I have to admit I get a rather sadistic pleasure out of watching this bit over and over again). See Lucy try to prepare a gourmet dinner while in a moving trailer, with disastrous results (God, the things they did to this lady!) See Desi perform a medley of songs while driving a huge convertible, pulling an even MORE huge trailer, all in stunning Technicolor. How could you NOT like this film? I must have seen this film at least 50 times when I was growing up! Detractors call this film one long "I Love Lucy" episode which, of course it is, but it certainly isn't dull, and Lucy and Desi were very talented, hardworking people. Who cares about their less-than-happy personal life? The supporting cast is great, filled with many characters actors who had long, long careers, such as Marjorie Main, Keenan Wynn, Moroni Olson, Madge Blake, and Bert Freed. The picture quality on the DVD is beautiful, with crisp imagery and breathtaking color. One can really understand why Lucille Ball was dubbed "Technicolor Tessie". She looks great. The location photography is picture-postcard lovely, and all of the pathologcally "Fifties" trappings, such as the Helen Rose clothes and humongous cars, remind us of a VERY different time. This film is a real time piece, it brings back very fond memories of a time that really seems "a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...." Where's my TV dinner?
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Showing 1-7 of 7 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Oct 14, 2007 12:07:29 PM PDT
Mister Chris says:
A wonderful review with a keen eye on our pop cultural past. Indeed "tail-finned" America in the 50's and early 60's had such cheesy charm that is all the more apparent as the years go by.
In reply to an earlier post on Oct 17, 2007 6:33:54 PM PDT
Ilona Novotny says:
The 50s were a rather strange decade...some sweetly, innocently goofy things, some not -so- nice bigotry and fear as well. I was born in 1956. A weel later, filming began on "The Curse of Frankenstein", and Ed Wood was shooting "Plan 9 From Outer Space" that month, too!
Posted on Aug 20, 2010 7:41:29 AM PDT
Joel D. Arndt says:
Posted on Feb 19, 2011 5:10:41 PM PST
James L. Dickinson says:
Great review is right. This movie I saw as a kid in the 60s most likely on a black and white tv and then maybe later on a color tv. The thing about this film that was so cool is my parents did this very same thing. in the mid 50s my dad got a big car and a bigger trailer and drug my mom all over the western USA. It was 4-5 years b4 I was born but they told me about it, most likely while watching this very film. I may have to get this DVD just to see my parents on the road again...well you know what I mean. PS - my dad got a motorhome in 1976 and we were off again this time I got some wheel time at 16-17 years old in a 25 ft rig. Oh those were the good old days. RIP mom and dad...Lucy and Desi. We love ya.
Posted on May 15, 2011 7:11:09 AM PDT
Great review indeed.
Posted on Jun 5, 2015 6:56:39 PM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Jul 28, 2015 5:19:10 PM PDT]
Posted on Sep 7, 2015 11:11:00 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 7, 2015 11:11:29 AM PDT
Yes, its charm is that it's an wonderful absurdist portal to the '50s.
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