Viva Las Vegas

Related Exhibition Double Down

Saturday, December 20, 2008, 1:00 p.m.

"About as pleasant and unimportant as a banana split," said the New York Times of Viva Las Vegas. Sure it's light and formulaic, but Viva Las Vegas is also smooth, hyperactive, genuinely infectious, and a fantastic vehicle for Elvis Presley at the peak of his powers. And it helped turn a still emerging desert town into an American icon. Elvis plays Lucky Jackson, a race-car driver who takes a job as a waiter in a Vegas casino to earn some money to fix his car in time for the big race. He was still lean and energetic in 1964, the sexual chemistry with Ann-Margret is volcanic, and director George Sidney was a master of this kind of thing.

Additional Info

George Sidney, 1964, 85 min.

Viva Las Vegas (still), 1964; photo courtesy of Photofest NYC

Film at SFMOMA is generously supported by the Phyllis C. Wattis Foundation.

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