Catalina Caper

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Catalina Caper
Catalina Caper.jpg
Theatrical poster
Directed by Lee Sholem
Produced by Jack Bartlett
Bond Blackman
Written by Sam Pierce (story)
Clyde Ware
Starring Tommy Kirk
Music by Jerry Long
Cinematography Ted V. Mikels
Editing by Herman Freedman
Distributed by Crown International Pictures
Warner Bros.
Release dates 1967
Running time 84 mins.
Country USA
Language English

Catalina Caper (also known as Never Steal Anything Wet) is a 1967 comedy musical mystery film starring Tommy Kirk. It is one of the last (if not the last) in the beach party film genre. This entry blends the beach format with a standard crime-caper comedy. It was shot on and around Santa Catalina Island, California.

The film was also featured in the second season of the movie-mocking television show Mystery Science Theater 3000 (MST3K).

Plot[edit]

An ancient Chinese scroll is stolen from a museum in Los Angeles and teenage Don Pringle (Kirk) arrives on Catalina Island simultaneously. Although approximately half of the film involves swimsuit-clad adolescents dancing on yachts in several different dance montages, Pringle and his friends investigate the scroll's theft and discover that the parents of one of the boys is responsible — also while attempting to woo a mysteriously depressed young woman Katrina Corelli (Ulla Strömstedt) from her vaguely threatening boyfriend Angelo (Lyle Waggoner). After wrestling the scroll away from Angelo and his cohorts, bent on more dangerous results (in an underwater scuba diving action scene), the boys secretly return the scroll to the museum to the relief of the repentant parents.

Production notes[edit]

Both Never Steal Anything Wet and Scuba Party were titles planned for the film, before the makers decided on Catalina Caper (see Music section below). It started filming in September 1965.

Tommy Kirk appeared in four other films in the beach party genre: Village of the Giants (1965); two AIP features, Pajama Party (1965) and The Ghost in the Invisible Bikini (1966); and It's a Bikini World (1967).

Music[edit]

The composer for this film, Jerry Long, also wrote the music for another beach party film, Wild Wild Winter. The two films are his only onscreen credits.

Long also wrote two songs for the film, "Never Steal Anything Wet," heard over the opening/closing credits and performed by Mary Wells; and "Scuba Party," performed onscreen by Little Richard, who is also credited as a co-writer on the song.

The Cascades perform "There's a New World," written by Ray Davies.

Carol Connors performs "Book of Love," which was written by Connors and Roger Christian.

Cast[edit]

Characters[edit]

  • Don Pringle - A friend of Charlie Moss' from college. Don is used to living in a desert environment, and Charlie's decision to bring him to Catalina Island is the first time he's seen the Pacific Ocean. He develops a crush on Katrina.
  • Charlie Moss - A friend of Don's, whom he met in college. A resident of Catalina, Charlie happily takes Don to have fun. Charlie is also a rather popular ladies' man, and has a group of 3 girls fawning over him the moment he returns to the island.
  • Tina Moss - Charlie's sister. Assigned to show Don a good time, she takes him scuba-diving, and develops a crush on Don. Grows jealous about his affections toward Katrina.
  • Katrina Corelli - Visits Catalina to be with her boyfriend, Angelo. Don meets her on the boat ride over. Something about her also makes her appealing to a number of guys on the island.
  • Angelo - Katrina's boyfriend who is on Catalina under the employ of Borman and Lakopolous. Has a quick temper, and is willing to kill to get the scroll for his employer.
  • Arthur Duval - "Vacations" on Catalina with his wife and son. Plans to pass a fake scroll off to Lakopolous.
  • Anne Duval - Arthur's wife. Plans to use her art skills to duplicate the stolen scroll.
  • Tad Duval - Arthur and Anne's son. Suspects that his parents are on Catalina as part of a shady scheme, even though his parents deny it.
  • Larry - The Duvals' henchman. A baseball fanatic who steals the scroll that Arthur and Anne plan to create a duplicate of.
  • Bob Draper - A member of the Catalina Island Harbor Patrol who is caught up in the scheme of the Duval's. Works with Don and Tad to hatch a plan.
  • Fingers O'Toole - A pratfalling agent who tails Larry to Catalina Island, hoping to catch Arthur Duval red-handed with the stolen scroll.
  • Lakopolous - A wealthy foreign man with a thick accent, who is known to collect plenty of rare antiquities. Comes to Catalina to retrieve the scroll from Arthur Duval.
  • Borman - Lakopolous' assistant. Tries to obtain the scroll from Duval without taking payment.

DVD releases[edit]

  • The MST3K version of the film (accompanied by the uncut version, included as a bonus feature) was released by Rhino Home Video as part of the Collection, Volume 1 DVD set, which is now out-of-print as of January 2010.

See also[edit]

The Boatniks (1970)

External links[edit]