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Elvis Presley As The One Called Charro!

May 08, 2006 | Book
A different kind of book of a different kind of movie?


The (soft)cover does not show Elvis as the clean shaven young man which appeals to the general public. This fits the role he played in the movie. Inside the pictures are presented on glossy paper with a few incidental notes for additional information.


The book opens with an introduction by Bill Bram which paints the background of the movie and puts it into an historical perspective. Add to that a few interview snippets of people who worked with Elvis on this movie and you have an interesting read.

The pictures are divided in several sections. In “Elvis On Screen” we get the big storyline of Elvis' 29th movie. In this western saga we find Elvis as Jess Wade, an (ex-)outlaw with a conscience who tries to break free from the clutches of a notorious gang. Vince (Victor French) is the leader who orders Jess' neck to be branded with a hot iron to make him look like the wanted criminal for a crime (stealing a gold-plated and jewel-encrusted Mexican cannon). Elvis becomes a deputy sheriff and captures one of the gang members. The gang terrorizes a small town by threatening to use a gold plated and jewel-encrusted Mexican cannon on the innocent population.

Interesting for many collectors and fans are the few “nude” shots (to spice up the movie for die hard western fans who might think Elvis was too soft regarding his other movie work) which were deleted from the movie in the United Stated edition of the movie.

In the “Candid Moments” section Elvis, the actors, the crew, the Colonel (this time pulling a gun on our man), visitors and fans pose for pictures or rehearse scenes. These pictures could easily have been mingled with the previous section for a more varied read.

In the “Publicity” section Elvis and co star Ina Balin pose for the standard publicity shots. On three pages we get press clippings and some promotional material is shown. This material could have been used more throughout the book to illustrate the images. Now we “just browse” many a-like-looking pictures. Everyone who writes a book on an Elvis movie should at least have a look at the Ger Rijff “Inside …” series to learn how to present this kind of material in a beautiful way.

In the final section “Charro! In Color” 14 pages with color pictures are shown; candids, movie stills and publicity shots. These look very good, showing the different kind of Elvis we know from the advertising slogan. The first edition of the book comes with a CD containing radio spots and interview snippets, nice for the collectors.


It is a nice book to have just because Elvis tried a different kind of role to aim his movie career in a different kind direction. The different kind of look is well documented in this book, but it is not the different kind of book we had hoped it would be, it is just too “simple” for that.
Remco Aland wrote on May 09, 2006
A different kind of Tunzi book... and not a bad one IMO. Okay so now we have a book on Charro! accompanied by a cd. Hope it will come to dvd soon. By the way, anyone else noticed that on page 69 of the book there's a wanted poster for 'Mean Joe Tunzi'?
newyorknewyork wrote on May 09, 2006
Truly a beautiful book, Elvis looks amazing, I haven't put it down since I got it. I love page 101. I love the introduction also. I can take or leave the nude scenes though. I really do hope it will come to dvd also. We all know Elvis couldn't act, but at least he gave it his best shot.
Gladyslove wrote on May 11, 2006
Maybe I am gonna buy this release. Tunzi is famous with his fantastic books but also with his price for a book and announcing a book months ago ( See the Session book III, nearly three years ).
shaneleebrown wrote on May 13, 2006
On the contrary, Elvis could act (have you not seen King Creole?) but wasn't given the parts in order to hone his craft.
Gladyslove wrote on May 18, 2006
What is on the CD ? Am I right that there is an unrelaesed interview ? Sorry but I can´t find an answer below.
newyorknewyork wrote on May 18, 2006
Gladyslove the cd is Elvis Presley As The One Called Charro! It features 5 unreleased radio spots, an audio featurette including interviews with director Charles Marquis Warren. It's mildly interesting, but worth getting I think.
Gladyslove wrote on May 19, 2006
3 times newyork: Thank you for that information. I will see that I get mine as soon as possible.
newyorknewyork wrote on May 19, 2006
I'm really sorry, I didn't mean Elvis couldn't act, I knew he could under the right circumstances as anyone who has seen "Wild In The Country", will know. It's just that some of the films were so dreadfully made and it was those I was referring too.
Steve V wrote on May 27, 2006
Just got the book. It's nice. This could have been a better movie if a little more $$$ were put into the production. Also a better director like Don Siegel who did Flaming Star. I like Elvis' post Speedway movies of the late 60's. At least he was trying different roles. By the way, where the heck are the DVD's for Stay Away Joe, Live A Little, & Charro? My tapes are worn out!!
stanton wrote on December 30, 2006
On a German TV Chanel they had showed Charro as one part of a whole series of western movies a few weeks ago and it made the winner!!! The audience has choosen it to be the best out of all they had showed. I am proud of it. New Years Day Flaming Star will be on; the next one who shows Elvis`real acting talent and I think personally he had it. For having had no special skills on acting he was a real natural talent and he did a great job; many movies he had to do any other man (or woman) would have turned down by reading the script, I guess. My son, 19 years old, saw the puppet theater scene from G.I. Blues the other day and comemnted that HE would have charged them at least 1 Million $ to do THAT, if he was him....so I think Elvis was right to be proud of his few serious roles and he had put alot of energy into them; also doing Charro!!! So this Elvis Movie should always receive special treatment.