The Complete Gidget Collection: (Gidget / Gidget Goes Hawaiian / Gidget Goes to Rome)
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Customers who bought this item also bought
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Sandra Dee became a model for countless teenagers in the late 1950's when she played Gidget, a sad-faced youngster who doesn't quite measure up to the chesty, bikinied girls on the beach. Her mom's reassurances come true when two surfers start paying Gidget some attention.
Gidget Goes Hawaiian
Gidget (Deborah Walley, Beach Blanket Bingo) is desperate: her parents want her to come with them on vacation to Hawaii during the two weeks when her beloved Jeff, aka “Moondoggie” (James Darren, The Brothers Rico), will be home from college. When he suggests she go, Gidget panics… doesn't he care to be with her? So she sets out for Hawaii in the worst mood. On the plane, she meets the sociable Abby, who advises her to forget about Moondoggie—advice which Abby regrets when Gidget steals her boyfriend Eddie (Michael Callan, Cat Ballou), a famous dancer. But when Jeff discovers he misses Gidget and makes the trip to Hawaii… the surfing “girl midget” better watch her step! Newly remastered.
"Just remember, she might be pint-sized, but she's quite a woman." The original surfer girl gets her own three-film DVD collection, dippy fun from a more innocent time. 1959's Gidget made real surfers nauseated, but it's a kicky movie with some great lounge-era lingo. Sandra Dee, perkiness personified, plays the curious teen who breaks the gender line in surfing. She's also got the attention of surf-happy Moondoggie (James Darren) and the big Kahuna (Cliff Robertson), the latter the prototype of the surf bum who roams the globe in search of the endless summer. The film actually kicked off the great boom in surfing popularity (the Beach Boys and the Beach Party movies followed), much to the chagrin of purists. It was based on a novel by Frederick Kohner, who was inspired by his daughter's experiences.
Gidget Goes Hawaiian (1961) puts Deborah Walley in the title role. She's no Sandra Dee, but at least there are shots of Walley doing her own surfing stunts. The action's in Waikiki, and Gidge is pursued by a confused Moondoggie and a famous dancer. They are played by James Darren and Michael Callan, and having the two 1960s male ingenues in the same movie suggests a weird collision of matter and anti-matter. The spark goes flat in Gidget Goes to Rome (1963), with yet another new actress (Cindy Carol) paired with a loyal James Darren. It's closer to Three Coins in the Fountain than the sandy beaches of Malibu.
DVD caveat: none of the films is in widescreen. The sequels don't suffer much, but the original Gidget was shot in CinemaScope, and the pan-and-scan approach hurts the summery look of the picture--even if it's just Sandra Dee balancing in front of blue-screen waves. --Robert Horton
Would you like to tell us about a lower price?
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Sandra Dee is probably the best of the movie Gidgets, overall, because of her obvious fish-out-of-water innocence as she hits the beach. The joking label "a girl and a midget is a Gidget" seems to fit her perfectly. In the Hawaiian sequel, the new Gidget actually is more athletic and we see some real action on the water, plus some very professional dance moves. And, if you're along for the whole ride through Gidget's movie and TV career, the third film in Rome features some over-the-top comedy from that era that's fun to watch.
What made all of this more engaging was a documentary: Accidental Icon: The Real Gidget Story. We had not been aware that there was a real Gidget. We're old enough to have enjoyed Sally Fields on TV as Gidget, but not old enough to have experienced the late-'60s bestselling novel described by the real surfer known as Gidget and written by her father. This documentary tells that story with lots of great archival photos—and it includes interviews with many women who now are professional surfers. Those women all credit the real Gidget with making the previously all-male sport something that they could consider.
We can tell you: Watching that documentary, either before or after you watch this trio of movies, will really add to your appreciation of this major trend in American culture back in the '50s and early '60s.
Gidget(1959): This first Gidget movie stars Sandra Dee as Frances Lawrence/Gidget and it's based on the novel by Frederick Kohner. In this first film, surfer Jeff/Moondoggie(James Darren) and Gidget meet for the first time.
Gidget Goes Hawaiian(1961): Sandra Dee was busy acting in three movies in 1961 and the producers hired cute red-headed actress...the late Deborah Walley...to play Gidget. Walley had enough talent and charm to carry the role. James Darren returns as Jeff/Moondoggie. The first Gidget was a solid film, but Gidget Goes Hawaiian is my personal favorite film in the series. It's closer in spirit to the Sally Field Gidget TV show from 1966. While on vacation in Hawaii, a spiteful girl(Vicky Trickett) spreads rumors that Gidget is an "easy girl". There's a side-splitting scene where Gidget imagines that she's a "fallen woman"! Carl Reiner plays Gidget's father in this film. Deborah Walley does some REAL surfing in this movie!
Gidget Goes to Rome(1963): This...is where the magic started to vanish! Cindy Carol was miscast as Gidget! There are dated jokes! There's only one surfing scene. Still, there are some redeeming factors. Jessie Royce Landis gives a good performance. John Williams(Star Wars, E.T., Raiders of the Lost Ark) wrote some quality music for this film. James Darren returns...and gives his final performance as Moondoggie. Don Porter plays Gidget's father in Gidget Goes to Rome and plays the same character in the Gidget TV show.
All three Gidget movies were directed by Paul Wendkos(Guns of the Magnificent Seven). Gidget movies are a reminder that kids have fun and they have to deal with angst as well!
This DVD set is a must for hard core Gidget fans!