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Retro : Loving Him Tender : TNT AND FAMILY CHANNEL MARK THE 18TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE DAY THE KING DIED

August 13, 1995|SUSAN KING | TIMES STAFF WRITER

There will be several Elvis Presley sightings this week, thanks to the Family Channel and TNT. In commemoration of the 18th anniversary--on Wednesday--of the king of rock 'n' roll's death, both cable channels will be airing vintage Elvis movies.

The Family Channel starts its tribute Sunday with two musicals from 1962: Kid Galahad and Follow That Dream. In "Kid Galahad" (2 p.m.), Presley plays a garage mechanic who becomes a prizefighter. Gig Young, Charles Bronson and Lola Albright also star in this average remake of the 1938 Wayne Morris-Bette Davis classic.

"Follow That Dream" (4 p.m.) finds Presley playing a young man who moves with his family to southernmost Florida, where they intend to homestead. Arthur O'Connell and Joanna Moore also star in this slight comedy based on Richard Powell's book "Pioneer Go Home."

TNT's Elvis-thon also begins Sunday, at 11 a.m., with all six hours of the short-lived 1990 ABC series Elvis: The Early Years, starring Michael St. Gerard as the young swivel-hipped Elvis. (The series repeats Tuesday at 5 p.m.)

Next up at 9:40 p.m. is one of Elvis' best, 1964's Viva Las Vegas. Elvis plays a race-car driver doing laps around swim instructor Ann-Margret. Songs include the title tune and "C'mon Every body."

Get Girl Happy at 11:30 p.m. In this enjoyable 1965 romp, Elvis plays a Fort Lauderdale nightclub entertainer forced to chaperone the fun-loving daughter of a Chicago mobster. Shelley Fabares, Gary Crosby, Joby Baker and Mary Ann Mobley co-star.

The tribute continues Monday at 5 p.m. with the 1970 documentary Elvis: That's The Way It Is. The 1972 documentary Elvis on Tour follows at 7:30 p.m.

On tap at 9:40 p.m is Speedway. Here again, Elvis is a successful race-car driver with a sexy IRS agent (Nancy Sinatra) on his tail. Bill Bixby and Gale Gordon also star.

At 11:40 p.m. is the 1963 musical comedy It Happened at the World's Fair, in which Presley and Gary Lockwood play two struggling bush pilots in Seattle for the World's Fair. They play father to a Chinese girl separated from her grandfather.

Tuesday's festivities kick off at 1 p.m. with the dreadful 1968 flick Stay Away Joe. Here, Elvis veers from the racetrack with disastrous results, portraying a part-Native American. At 11 p.m., TNT presents the 1957 classic Jailhouse Rock, which includes the title tune, in addition to "Baby, I Don't Care," "Young and Beautiful" and "Treat Me Nice." Judy Tyler, Dean Jones and Mickey Shaughnessy also star.

Don't bother to set your VCRs for 1965's loopy Harum Scarum (1:05 a.m.). Elvis plays a movie star who becomes involved in silly intrigue while visiting a Middle Eastern country. Mary Ann Mobley also stars.

The 1969 Western Charro!, which features Elvis in a rare non-singing role as a reformed gunman, airs Wednesday at 1 p.m. Perhaps a few tunes could have salvaged this turkey.

Equally inane is the 1969 musical comedy Change of Habit (5 p.m. and 9:15 p.m.). Elvis plays a doctor working in a free clinic assisted by three plainclothes nuns (Mary Tyler Moore, Barbara McNair and Leora Dana).

At 7:05 p.m. there's a Clambake (1967). Elvis stars as a Texas oil heir who switches places with a swimming instructor. Shelley Fabares, Bill Bixby and Will Hutchins also star.

Goofy is as goofy does: Elvis plays an Air Force officer and his look-alike hillbilly cousin in the 1964 musical comedy Kissin' Cousins (11:20 p.m.). Arthur O'Connell, Glenda Farrell, Pamela Austin and Yvonne Craig also star. Directed by movie musical-comedy star Gene Nelson ("Oklahoma!").

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