Elvis | PS News

by John J. Williams

Arguably the greatest entertainer who ever lived, singer, actor, and ‘King of Rock’ n’ Roll’ – Elvis Presley – left an indelible mark on popular culture that continues to this day. His unique star quality made him one of the most influential artists of his music era.

The biographical music drama Elvis tells the story from the point of view of its manager Colonel Tom Parker (Tom Hanks is outstanding in this role). Presley rose to fame in the 1950s while maintaining a complex relationship with Parker. In 1997, he lay on his deathbed, reflecting on how he first met the man who would later be considered one of the most important cultural icons of the 20th century.Elvis |  PS News

Elvis certainly had the moves — from his spinning hips to his rubbery legs — that made him a global phenomenon. In 1956 he said this about his way of moving on stage: “Some people tap their feet, some snap their fingers, and some wave back and forth. I do them all together, I guess.”

He knew how to excite his audience, but not all audiences were impressed by the young entertainer. Many parents feared that his music was corrupting their children, and racist politicians also attacked him.

In the early days, Elvis had a poverty-stricken childhood with his parents, Vernon (Richard Roxburgh) and Gladys (Helen Thomson). He finds music a salvation, even though his peers ridicule him for his fascination with the African-American music of Memphis Beale Street.

While stationed in Germany, Elvis meets Priscilla Beaulieu (played by Olivia DeJonge). After discharge, he resumes his career-making concert tours and movies as Parker’s control over his life grows even stronger. Elvis is heartbroken by the murders of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert Kennedy because he wants to be more politically outspoken in his music. In contrast, Parker wanted him to sing light-hearted tunes that would be best-sellers.

Now Elvis is brought back to life – 45 years after his death – in a career-defining performance of newcomer Austin Butler that has received near-universal acclaim.

Elvis is directed by Oscar winner Baz Luhrmann (Moulin Rouge!, Romeo + Juliet, Strictly Ballroom), who co-wrote the screenplay with Sam Bromell, Craig Pearce, and Jeremy Doner based on a story by Luhrmann and Doner.

Whether you like Shake, Rattle, and Roll or have All Shook Up dance in your Blue Suede Shoes…after seeing Elvis, you will be one of the many who will sing: I’ll Remember You!

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