Friday, February 22, 2008

Video of Tony Curtis in 1962 Disneyland with Suzanne Pleshette

I was going to submit this to boingboing a few days ago after
completing my shot descriptions. Someone beat me to it this morning
Oh Well!

Video of Tony Curtis in 1962 Disneyland with Suzanne Pleshette

In 1962, Universal (imagine that) filmed a Tony Curtis comedy that had
an extended sequence filmed at Disneyland. The film - "40 Pounds of
Trouble" is an updated version of the
classic Runyon tale "Little Miss Marker".

That entire 16 min sequence has landed in YouTube (with no tags
indicating what it really is) and is linked to from the
isntlifeterrible blog in a tribute to the late Suzanne Pleshette.

What a fascinating find and an amazing view of 1962 Disneyland. Many
shots of extinct attractions and unusual views.

But it is a Disneyland with some even more warped and amazing
geographical anomalies and strange rule breaking as I indicate in my
screen shot descriptions below.

Part one - 8 min 29 sec

The clip begins as Tony and Suzanne and the little girl arrive at
Disneyland via Helicopter (Helicopter service was discontinued a few
years later after 2 devastating Helicopter crashes).

After a few aerial views of the park, the trio finds itself in the
nose cone of the Disneyland-Alweg Mark II Monorail admiring more views
of the park (theoretically possible chronologically, as the Mark II
was part of the extension to the Disneyland Hotel so the trio could
have embarked there.)
They arrive at the Tomorrowland station and step over to the rail to
look over the park.

cut to - a shot of Main Street U.S.A. from the Santa Fe-Disneyland
Railroad Main Street Station.

What the Heck?! That's not right. Or did they find their way there and
this is later?

No! Cut back to the trio Goshwowing over the view as they are
obviously in the Tomorrowland Monorail station.

Next, they take a Surrey ride in Town Square as Alice and the Mad
Hatter pass by in the background.
The little girl cries out "There's Mickey Mouse" as the Surrey passes
a very weird version of Mickey and Minnie. These are obviously better
than the Ice Capades costumes used 7 years before when the park
opened, though.

Suzanne points out "The Keystone Cops playing the saxophone" as the
little girls sez "Hi, Policemen".

In a view down Tomorrowland Way, we see the little girl chasing the
Three Little Pigs (What are the Pigs doing in Tomorrowland?)

The YouTube video goes dark for a few seconds at the 2 minute mark.

When it resumes, we are riding a Canal Boat through Storybookland.
This features what is probably an actual cast member spieling as we go
through Monstro and see Pinocchio's village, Toad Hall, and
Cinderella's Castle.

A couple of seconds in a Teacup is followed by a ride in the original
Astro-Jets as we watch as Tony simultaneously tries to hide from the
people chasing him and is turning green from a fear of heights.

Across the park, we see the trio arriving from a trip on the Mine
Train through Nature's Wonderland. (Many of the buildings behind them
are still visible in the queue of Big Thunder.) The little girl is
wearing Mickey ears in this scene only for some reason.

A cigar chomping cop is seen looking for Steve (Tony Curtis'
character) in the courtyard of Sleeping Beauty's Castle.

Next - we have just passed through the Matterhorn while riding the
Skyway toward Fantasyland. Suzanne and the little girl are in one
gondola while Tony is in another. An older lady seated next to him
proclaims "Isn't this exciting" and he tells her of his fear of

The Dark Ride sequence that follows is very, very strange, as it
combines elements of all the Dark Rides as if they are one. We see the
trio start out in a Peter Pan pirate ship. The next few quick cuts
shift between Snow White and Mr. Toad and reaction shots of the trio
(obviously no longer in a pirate ship). The little girl cowers as the
Mr. Toad locomotive bears down on their car.

A lovely view of the Matterhorn (with Monorail passing as a rappeller
comes down the mountain), is followed by a ride on the Matterhorn
Bobsleds (point of view AND reaction shots of the riders obviously
filmed on the attraction).

The plot starts kicking in as the believability drops. Tony spots his
pursuer as they go through the Bobsled exit turnstile. He jumps the
exit and they get back into the Bobsled for another ride.

Pausing for a meal in front of the Chicken of the Sea restaurant in
Fantasyland, the trio disguises themselves with full face masks of
Kennedy, Khrushchev, and Castro (I doubt the park sold these!). Tony
wants to leave, but the little girl wants to visit Tom Sawyer Island.

On the Island, they pass Harper's Mill and go to the Treehouse, where
their pursuer catches up with them - temporarily.

Part 1 ends with the trio crossing the barrel bridge.

Part 2 - 7 min 42 sec

Continuing across the barrel bridge, the trio and their pursuer have a
run in with a heavyset lady who wields her purse at the cigar chomper.

Everyone then crosses the suspension bridge and gets tangled up with a
troupe of German Boy Scouts.

Inside Fort Wilderness, the chase is suspended while the United States
Flag is raised and saluted.

Fort Wilderness experiences an Indian attack. Our intrepid trio ducks
out through the escape tunnel.
They board a raft back to the park but are stopped by a cast member
asking for a ticket. (I don't think tickets were required to LEAVE the
island!). Tony pays and makes a spectacular leap from the dock to the
raft. Mr. Cigar is left at the dock and assured that another raft will
be along in a few minutes. He high tails it to the fishing dock where
he flashes his cop badge at a cast member in a conveniently placed

Tony and company exit the Tom Sawyer raft at the Mark Twain dock instead of the raft dock and run past an amused crowd that obviously knows a movie is being filmed.
The cop also goes to the Mark Twain dock. His boat driver gets out of there just ahead of the massive Mark Twain.

Tony dons a Fantasia Mushroom costume and runs into the middle of the
street in Frontierland (I thought Walt was a stickler for out of place
characters!). He sheds the costume in the queue area of the Mine Train
(which is not only devoid of guests, it is also 180 degrees away from
the direction we last saw him running.)

Tony runs into the tunnel leading to Nature's Wonderland and into the
painted desert scene. The cop soon follows.

From there, they both run through the animatronic Indian village and
interact with the scenery and an unexpected cast member.

Tony ends up running down the Disneyland Railroad tracks and into a
tunnel. A few seconds later he runs out of the tunnel in front of the
C.K. Holliday Engine Number 1.

Suddenly he is in Fantasyland again, vaulting over a worker in front
of the Pirate Ship and bouncing through the Three Little Pigs. Things
get fast and furious in the chase as he and the cop pass by, over, and
through King Arthur's Carrousel (with the Disneyland band on the
horses), Sleeping Beauty Castle (where the portcullis gate is lowered suddenly
to trap the cop), and past a group of Japanese Sailors who get Tony to
take their picture.

Into the Hub, where Keystone Cop costumed cast members enter the chase
as... Keystone Cops! (The center of the Hub is a grassy circle. The
Partners stature of Walt and Mickey stands there now.)

Tony runs into Tomorrowland and leaps over the fence to board an
Autopia car (Probably Mark V cars - Bob Gurr article at ) The cop commandeers
another car - "Hey Kid! Follow that car!" and pops a kid's balloon
with his cigar. There is a quick shot of the keystone cops racing down
Main Street in the Antique Car.

Tony and the cop both abandon their cars mid course. Tony leaps aboard a passing caboose on the Railroad.

The train (pulled by Number 3 - the Fred Gurley) pulls into Main Street Station where Suzanne and the kid are waiting. Another cop is waiting nearby and confronts them. Suzanne creates a diversion by leaping into the cop's arms and pretending he is a long lost relative while Tony and the kid leave the park. The kid stops to hug the White Rabbit, Goofy, and the Big Bad Wolf while they run. The kid also gets Tony to buy a large bunch of balloons and they race out the exit.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

A visit to FDR's Little White House and meeting the Tuskegee Airmen

On Saturday Feb 9, 2008 We visited FDR's Little White House, met some of the Tuskegee Airmen (as they were honored by the Patriot Guard Riders), ate lunch at Bulloch House restaurant, visited the old Rehabilitation Institute swimming pool, and went to FDR's favorite spot on Pine Mountain.