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American Graffiti

tn_americangraffitilucasminusstarwarsI honestly had never seen this movie until now. So this will likely be the last George Lucas directed movie for me, unless he ever goes through with making those inaccessible art movies he always says he wants to make. AMERICAN GRAFFITI is different from the other ones he directed  because it’s the only one that’s not in space or in a futuristic dystopian worker colony under the earth. At least as far as is revealed in the text. Also it’s his only directorial work that has, like, wall-to-wall jams by Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers and The Platters and people like that. Maybe he shoulda done that trick on ATTACK OF THE CLONES to make the young love go down easier.

Yeah, it’s weird that this is a really distinctive, personal and hugely influential film that was Lucas’s big breakthrough in Hollywood, and then he never did anything much like it again. He just let other people make Happy Days and shit while he was tinkering in the FX lab.

I’m not sure what the title means exactly, but it’s kinda too bad they used it for this because it would’ve made WILD STYLE seem more epic and important. This is the story of a bunch of Los Angelenos Modestenos graduating high school in 1962, and having one last night out together before some of them leave to begin their adult lives. Curt (Richard Dreyfuss playing a teenager just two years before JAWS!) is supposed to leave for college on the East Coast the next day, but he’s getting cold feet. Steve (Ronny Howard, later star of Happy Days) is also leaving and wants to convince his younger girlfriend Laurie (Cindy Williams, later star of Happy Days spin-off Laverne & Shirley) that they should still technically be together but also see other people. Terry (Charles Martin Smith, later in THE BUDDY HOLLY STORY) is a huge nerd who borrows Steve’s awesome car to drive around and impress people. And John Milner (Paul Le Mat) isn’t going to college, so to him it’s another night as the tough guy cruising for girls in the area’s most badass yellow drag racer. But then he gets tricked into picking up somebody’s little sister Carol (Mackenzie Phillips), cramping his style.

This format of movie is very familiar now, copied most directly in DAZED AND CONFUSED. There’s not that much of a traditional narrative, but there’s a group of connected characters who all have their own little storylines going on as the time passes. Most of them either learn a lesson or come to some kind of understanding near the end. Meanwhile, we bask in the music, fashion and slang of the period. In this case it’s the early sixties, but it’s mostly imagery that we associate with the ’50s. This is the problem with generalizing by decade, is that it bleeds over. When they started high school it was still the ’50s, so they still love things from a few years ago. It would be easier if at the end of a decade everybody hands in their clothes and gets the new ones.

mp_americangraffitiAnyway we got these hot rods, slicked back hair, undershirts with a pack of Camels tucked in the sleeve, that was Lucas’s idea of cool. But the college boys like Steve and Curt aren’t pretending to be badasss, they’re kind of meek dudes in plaid shirts who actually are friends with girls, they’re not just hunting for them. So adult Lucas has the plaid shirt and a pompadour. He’s a combination of the two types, with added beard because of the ’70s.

It’s an excellent ensemble cast, of course. Howard is sort of the relatable nice guy nerd with dickish underpinnings. He wants to try out other girls but doesn’t have the balls to tell his girlfriend. Williams made me wonder why she didn’t become a movie star. I guess because 2 years later she was playing Shirley on Happy Days and then Laverne & Shirley and there was also a cartoon spin-off and by the time she moved on in 1983 everybody was always gonna think of her as Shirley. Harrison Ford also shows up as a villainous redneck who wants to race. He has on a cowboy hat and I didn’t recognize him at first.

But the most interesting character is actually the one actor I didn’t recognize from other stuff, Paul Le Mat as John. He’s the more macho of the group of friends, the one who knows how to fix cars, who can’t afford to go to college, and never expected to. He goes out here trying to pick up women, ends up babysitting somebody’s kid sister. At first he’s horrified, and afraid of how it will look, but then he starts to enjoy her company and become protective of her. It’s a cliche character arc for a reason. It works.

Le Mat actually played Donald Westlake’s character Dortmunder, but it was in the movie JIMMY THE KID starring Gary Coleman. He was also in PUPPETMASTER.

Wait a minute, hold on a second here. In the STAR WARS prequels by George Lucas, Anakin Skywalker has a fondness for fast, show-offy yellow space ships. In fact, in CLONES he uses a yellow speeder with an exposed engine much like Milner’s. That’s gotta be a reference. And also there’s that diner that Obi Wan goes to, it’s different but it’s kinda in a similar vein…

americangraffiti_clones

Oh damn, I’m sure everybody already noticed this (yeah, here’s a page on starwars.com about it) but like I said, I never saw AMERICAN GRAFFITI before, so it’s new to me. Somebody really should edit CLONES with the GRAFFITI soundtrack. But this is exactly the topic for not this series of reviews, which is about not being about STAR WARS. So let’s move on.

AMERICAN GRAFFITI is an ode to simpler times. We learn the fates of the characters via text at the end. One, of course, dies in Vietnam. So it’s saying remember back then, when we could drive around and hang out, and there wasn’t all this turmoil? But in a way that’s naive. Maybe there was no war in Vietnam, but it was not really a picnic all the time for black Americans. These kids might not’ve paid attention to that until they got a little older. I don’t believe there are any black people in the movie, but there is one casual reference to the acceptance of racism: they all listen to Wolfman Jack on the radio and one character confesses that her parents won’t let her listen to him “because he’s a Negro.” (If you don’t get the joke, the real Wolfman Jack later appears as himself. He does not appear to be a Negro.)

But anyway, a yearning for simpler times is also an acknowledgment of complicated times. It was talking about its today by toasting its yesterday. That sounded kinda fancy what I just wrote there, but I meant it.

still_americangraffitiThe AMERICAN GRAFFITI lifestyle seems so far away, it’s funny to think that it was only 11 years ago when the movie was made. Man, 2004 doesn’t seem long enough ago to make a nostalgic period piece about it. People would call each other’s cell phones instead of texting, maybe. They would still have VCRs, but would use Tivo, and the TVs wouldn’t be flat. A marquee in the background would say SPIDER-MAN 2 and SAW. The soundtrack would have “Drop It Like It’s Hot” and “American Idiot.” It wouldn’t be that exciting.

And maybe that’s why this one was so powerful at the time. The culture was changing at a much more rapid rate. The civil rights movement was new, America losing a war was new, seeing terrifying images of these things on TV was new, so the music and the fashion and the movies and the drugs all got a jolt from that. People started trying to be open to new ideas and rejecting The Man and it was scary and they started to miss their old hot rods and cruising for girls, is my guess. And AMERICAN GRAFFITI does a good job of capturing both of those moments: the one where you were young, and the one where you missed being young.

 

THE CHILDREN OF AMERICAN GRAFFITI: ’80s nostalgia for the ’50s nostalgia of the ’70s led to crap like the above, which we are now nostalgic for.

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.
This entry was posted on Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 at 8:36 am and is filed under Comedy/Laffs, Drama, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

45 Responses to “American Graffiti”

  1. I tried watching this once and basically just a skimmed it. Didn’t hold my attention in any way and not a single moment took hold in my memory. Strange that in a filmography that includes THX-1138 and THE PHANTOM MENACE, this purposely (one might even say cynically) crowd-pleasing coming-of-age comedy is the one I find unwatchable.

  2. Nice review – I saw this for the first time when I was about six or seven, and envy you getting to see it for the first time now. A word of advice though. Avoid the sequel. I couldn’t find a copy for almost twenty years, and wish I hadn’t. Not ‘Blues Brothers 2000’ bad but bad enough to make you wanna stick with the original.

  3. I actually own the soundtrack of this on vinyl. No, it’s not some weird hipster thing. When my parents divorced, my father left a bunch of records behind and that was one of them. To my own surprise I listened to it a lot as a kid, but you know how kids are: They are either totally open to all kinds of cool classic shit or reject the same stuff for being old.

    The “one magic night” subgenre is maybe my favourite one. Next to “Group of people trapped in an enclosed space with one or more monsters”. This is definitely a good entry, although not one of my favourites. It has its qualities, but I didn’t really care for some characters and stories (Like the Richard Dreyfuss story.) To be honest, I even like the much hated sequel a little bit more (although it’s not about “one magic night”). But still, this is a great one.

    I just wonder if Lucas is also the pioneer of “Arthouse/Indie filmmaker directing popcorn blockbusters over the course of three movies or less”, that seems to happen so often today.

  4. I love this movie. When I first saw it it was because it had one of my then favourite Peckinpah actors in it – Bo Hopkins. I still think he’s the coolest character in it, even if it’s easy to see why Lucas thought of Harrison when he was preparing STAR WARS. In the 70’s he WAS Han Solo.

  5. This is a cute and entertaining movie, but I’m pretty leery of anything that traffics heavily in nostalgia, especially nostalgia for an era I didn’t live through. Nostalgia is kind of a cheap way to make something seem more meaningful than it is, plus I think it leads to over-sentimentality and encourages people to look at the past with rose-colored glasses.

    Plus, I distrust anyone who remembers their teen years as being generally happy and good.

  6. I saw this in the cinema when it first came out. I’d never heard of any of the actors or the director, but a friend had bunked off college to see it and said it was great, so we all trotted off to the cinema that same afternoon.

    I still think it’s Lucas’ best film, and it’s certainly the best directed, though I’ve since heard rumours he had a lot of help from friends like Francis Coppola. Around the time I saw it there was a minor rocker revival at the London art college I was at – the thing I mainly remember was that some of the guys in Industrial Design started going round with Brylcreem in their hair (this was before stuff like gel, mousse or conditioner, which didn’t really catch on till the 1980s) and wearing straight-legged jeans while everyone else was still in flares.

    It was also around the time of the stage musical Grease, which was set in 1959 and plugged into 1950s rocker style. I suspect there are people around now who think Grease is an authentic slice of 1950s – but it was never more than a 1970s pastiche of the 1950s. The 1970s was a decade of period pastiche, with fashions and musical taste often influenced by movies like The Sting, The Great Gatsby, The Last Picture Show, Paper Moon and so on. Maybe because original 1970s fashions were so horrible.

    The year American Graffiti is set – 1962 – is important, I think. It’s one year before the assassination of JFK, which has since been enshrined as a cliché watershed moment in film and fiction, a signifier of the nation’s loss of innocence and all that malarkey. Though if you ask me the nation was never as innocent as all that anyway. It just liked to present itself as such, and until the 1960s no-one questioned that.

    As you point out, the freewheeling ensemble cast with multiple interwoven storylines wasn’t as familiar a format back then as it is now, though I think Robert Altman was starting to play around with it. The soundtrack was revolutionary though – I don’t think there were any classic rock ‘n’ roll compilation soundtracks before this one and Mean Streets, which came out at around the same time, but wasn’t a mainstream hit. The album was even more influential than the film.

    I’m surprised you don’t mention Candy Clark, so good in The Man Who Fell to Earth.

  7. Vern, if you think Williams is good in this, check out More American Graffiti. Her scene on the bus is rather strong. Actually, I prefer the sequel. It’s almost like a Tarantino movie, with the multiple timelines and all. I mean you know that a good chunk of the characters will die, so it has a pall over it, but also a bit of suspense. (You know Milner will die in a car wreck, so every time he gets in a car you’re like, “Oh shit!”) I will say the Candy Clarke scenes go on too long in MORE, but since the contain the great Ford cameo, it’s all good.

  8. Lucas made three great movies at the dawn of his career. A masterpiece.

    I believe the title was a reference to the Italian film IL VITELLONI, which is about four guys who just hang around their little village until life forces them to grow up, and at the end one of them leaves to go live in Rome. The word “graffiti” is from the italian “grafiato” and was used to describe the ancient writing people had scrawled on the walls of Pompeii, later found in the ruins by modern explorers. (You can see already the Indiana Jones-esque appeal of this to Lucas.) Lucas wanted AMERICAN GRAFFITI to be like that for future generations, a glimpse of a lost time. Supposedly the execs at Universal were scared people would think it was a foreign film.

  9. Dan; “Plus, I distrust anyone who remembers their teen years as being generally happy and good.”

    I know it’s all down to pure luck, but thanks to a flat me and my brother inherited and parents that didn’t give a crap, I can actually say that I was happy from the age of 15 and upwards. But, please, feel free to distrust me all you want…

  10. I think JD is probably right about AMERICAN GRAFFITI being a reference to IL VITELLONI. I say this because the famous book EASY RIDERS, RAGING BULLS (about American film directors of the 1970s) has Lucas telling someone his film was an American version of IL VITELLONI and being frustrated that no one seemed to notice.

    I first watched AMERICAN GRAFFITI on TV as a kid, but never really cared about it apart from the historical value of it being a film from the creator of STAR WARS. Only as an adult do I realize it’s supposed to have that MAD MEN quality where you’re mentally checking what’s on the screen against your own contemporary world and noticing how big the difference is.

    It takes an effort of imagination for me to see that, though, because that 1950s/early-60s culture is too far before my own time to have even secondhand nostalgia. Whereas the 60s/70s counterculture was constantly being referenced when I was younger, so MORE AMERICAN GRAFFITI is the one that clicks with me.

    So I second Jack Burton’s recommendation of MORE AMERICAN GRAFFITI, which is flawed but hugely underrated. And it takes place before the postscript text at the end of the original AMERICAN GRAFFITI and explains how those events came to be, so it is technically Lucas’ first prequel, and definitely his first time handing over a universe he created to a different director while still producing.

  11. Also – saying that Lucas combines the hot-rodders’ pompadour with the nerds’ plaid shirt and a 70s beard? MIND BLOWN.

  12. pegsman,

    eyeing you suspiciously right now…

  13. On the flip side, I distrust anyone who still holds grudges about their high school experience past the age of 21.

  14. Vern, a minor note: The film doesn’t take place in Los Angeles but in Modesto, which is 300 miles to the north in the agricultural San Joaquin Valley between Fresno and Sacramento.

    I watched this in 2006 soon after graduating from high school myself. I found a lot of things rang true for me. While I grew up far from the Sixties, my small, ag-heavy hometown (just 90 minutes from Modesto) had roughly the population of Modesto in 1962. The downtown main drag was similar but with more 90s/00s stucco and shinier, more aerodynamic pickup trucks. I think it does a good job of capturing small-town aimlessness, especially as you experience the newfound freedom of adulthood. Many a night was spent cruising around looking for fun and/or booze with my buddy in his mid-90s Chevy C1500 pickup, which was manual transmission and made a roar each time he shifted. It’s what you do in a town that small, which shuts down after 8pm except for a few watering holes and late-night diners.

    I’d like to watch it again with an older eye and see how it compares.

  15. The Original Paul

    December 3rd, 2015 at 1:00 pm

    Who do I instinctively distrust? People who use the term “it’s only a game” dismissively while playing one (these people will ruthlessly cheat, lie and backstab their way to victory, while accusing anybody who objects to them doing so of being “no fun” or “taking it too seriously”.) I don’t think their views of their teenage life factor much into it though.

    As for AMERICAN GRAFFITI, I tried to watch it once, but I was in a rotten mood at the time so turned it off ten minutes in. I didn’t want to spoil it for myself. Now that I’m a bit older and more even-tempered, I might give it another try.

  16. Mr. M,

    Haha, okay fair enough. I don’t hold any specific grudges against anyone from high school or anything like that. I just remember that, along with the fun, it was a time of awkwardness and frustration and uncertainty, and I feel like people use nostalgia to gloss over that a lot.

  17. Also I just kinda mean that I don’t like the kind of people who think things were better when they were a teenager, values were better, pop culture was better, etc etc. It wasn’t, you were just a dumb kid then and you liked everything.

  18. Yeah, I’d say if you enjoyed your high school years, great. But if you’re desperate to go back to them, you probably haven’t really learned anything in the intervening years.

  19. My favorite scene is Terry the Toad trying to buy beer without an ID. It’s just so funny; “I lost my ID…in a flood.” Harrison Ford says they originally wanted his hair to be a crewcut but since it was the days of men with long hair and he couldn’t get another role for a few months he suggested the cowboy hat. He also I believe, ad-libbed the part where he sings “Some Enchanted Evening” to Cindy Williams.

  20. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that Terry the Toad actor Charles Martin Smith, in addition to being one of the best parts of this and THE UNTOUCHABLES, is a director and made the fucking awesome metalsploitation horror movie TRICK OR TREAT. I have no idea if Smith is a fan of the genre at all, but it’s the only metalsploitation film I’ve seen with actual decent music in it, and a story that might actually appeal to a metal fan. So I consider him an honorary metalhead.

  21. I watched this one for the first time just recently, and it instantly became a favorite of mine. I love how mythical it all feels, from the ‘one special night’-scenario to the endless circling white T-Bird to the almost non-stop soundtrack that is practically a character in the movie, mixed a bit too high to just be meant as background noise.

    I also liked how the Beach Boys’ ‘Surfin Safari’ us introduced as the harbinger of the real 60s (one character actually voices her disapproval of it if I’m correct), and that ‘All Summer Long’, which plays over the end credits, is actually from ’64, indicating that the 50s rockers are now firmly in the past.

    I think that it would be a mistake to characterise this movie as an honest attempt to capture a time and a place in 1962, as it rather is the myth of that time made flesh.

  22. From a quick google search, it turns out the Vietnam War was heating up in 1962, so I’m not so sure that Lucas is saying that America had a time of innocence that was shattered. It’s more like these people were young and oblivious about the world around them, and these are the final moments before the world comes crashing down around them. Or at least that’s a possible interpretations. I haven’t watched this one since high school, but like others I find the one magical night story line really appealing, although I can’t think of a film that really takes advantage of it other than this and Dazed and Confused.

  23. RBatty: How about AFTER HOURS?

  24. Good one, Mike V. I’ve been meaning to watch that for a while now. It’s on the list!

  25. grimgrinningchris

    December 3rd, 2015 at 6:40 pm

    Dan Prestwich… Nice to see some appreciation for TRICK OR TREAT. It’s DVD/Video packaging has never hinted at the gem of 80s supernatural-slasher goodness that lies within. It is a very competently made movie with some fun kills and fun (especially for metalheads) premise, Skippy is very likable in it and yes… the Fastway soundtrack is really good. Funny how their singer went on to front Flogging Molly.

    As for Charles Martin Smith… everyone always talks about this one or The Buddy Holly Story or The Untouchables and (if they’re really cool) him directing Trick Or Treat… but nobody ever talks about his one major starring vehicle- Never Cry Wolf- GREAT fucking movie…

  26. grimgrinningchris

    December 3rd, 2015 at 6:46 pm

    Whoa! Charles Martin Smith directed the pilot episode of Buffy… I never knew that!!!

  27. grimgrinningchris

    December 3rd, 2015 at 6:58 pm

    Also, tying American Graffiti into Christmas… Paul Lemat starred in my favorite Made-For-TV Christmas movie of the 80s… THE NIGHT THEY SAVED CHRISTMAS… also featuring Jacklyn Smith, Art Carney, Paul Williams (as an elf), a very young Scott Grimes and the bad guy from F/X…

  28. I want to thank everybody for all the smart comments on this and the THX 1138 review. I’ve been excited to do this series for a long time, and your insights make it even more fun. I truly appreciate it.

  29. Franchise Fred can’t wait for you to get to More American Graffiti in this series. I actually saw it for the first time in a theater last year (The New Beverly). What if they had done one for every decade, the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s too? Then they probably would’ve ruined it with prequels about their parents in the ’20s, ’30s and ’40s.

  30. I always meant to watch this one but don’t think I ever have. I do recall seeing some of MORE AMERICAN GRAFFITI but not rhe original. This review series just reminded me to add it to my rental que.

  31. Fred, according to Lucas, the protagonists in RADIOLAND MURDERS are supposed to be the parents of Richard Dreyfusses character. So in a way, there is a prequel.

  32. Vern, that’s a really interesting point that AG was made only 11 years after the year that it holds out for nostalgic veneration (62). Your comparison to what it would be like now if someone made a nostalgic look back at 2004… Really interesting. Somehow I’d never pegged the timing on this.

    That is a pretty striking sign about how much change in that particular decade.

  33. The thing I’ve always wondered about this movie is how many people made the connection between STAR WARS and AMERICAN GRAFFITI at the time? Because AMERICAN GRAFFITI was a huge hit movie, so how often was the question “what the heck is STAR WARS?” answered by “oh, it’s a new sci fi movies from the director of AMERICAN GRAFFITI”?

    I don’t know why I’m curious about that, I guess it’s because I’ve always been curious about what it must have been like to discover STAR WARS back in ’77, was AMERICAN GRAFFITI part of the initial word of mouth that made STAR WARS a success with older audiences?

  34. Griff, before the internet we didn’t make those connections. You saw a poster outside the cinema and decided to go or not. I guess some of us looked for the name of the director and drew a connection to an earlier movie we (might) have seen. But almost none of the regular newspapers had stuff about upcoming movies. Of course we heard about STAR WARS when it became a huge hit in the USA, but we knew almost nothing about it before a local movie journalist wrote a review.

  35. I see, but didn’t directors already start to become household names after Spielberg and JAWS? Not to mention Hitchcock.

  36. Sure. But I guess AMERICAN GRAFITTI didn’t do so well over here that Lucas had reached that level yet. I don’t know what it was like over the pond? But I remember they showed clips form AG and mentioned George when they talked about SW on telly. You see, we had our own version of Roger Ebert, and he knew everything!

  37. The 1960s/1970s was absolutely the era when directors had name recognition, at least among film buffs.

    AMERICAN GRAFFITI helped convince Alan Ladd Jr. to take a chance on STAR WARS despite not quite understanding it, and GRAFFITI becoming a hit was what allowed Lucas to renegotiate his STAR WARS contract to include the sequel and merchandising rights.

    Also, Alec Guinness liked GRAFFITI and that’s what convinced him to appear in STAR WARS even though he wasn’t a science fiction fan.

    Somewhere I have the old novelization of STAR WARS with the pages of color photos in the middle, and I seem to remember the accompanying text saying “from the director of AMERICAN GRAFFITI” or words to that effect.

    Because the modern hardcore audience for STAR WARS tends not to be the audience for dramas, AMERICAN GRAFFITI comes up today even less than THX 1138 does, so it’s easy to assume that audiences at the time had a similar perspective. But that’s probably wrong. The old posters and trailers for STAR WARS didn’t mention GRAFFITI specifically, but they do mention the name George Lucas as if it should mean something to the public.

  38. (Alan Ladd Jr. being the head of 20th Century Fox at the time)

  39. I love this movie. I saw it for the first time at the Grand Illusion on 35mm. I was really struck by how charming and human it was. Not that Star Wars isn’t human but it does feel far removed from normal, everyday concerns, and it’s infinitely more warm and funny than THX. I’ve been thinking about revisiting it before TFA opens.

    The only thing I wasn’t a fan of was those little bumpers at the end. I remember many of them being pretty dark and it seemed like weak, leftover 1970s cynicism. I don’t think the audience needs to be told directly that this is a moment in time for them that is going to end and they’ll be left to face more grown-up concerns in “the real world.”

  40. So I’m actually watching this right now and I didn’t expect it to be so dark. Not thematically I mean literally. Some of the night scenes are borderline indecipherable.

  41. Ok so having finally watched it John Milner is probably my favorite Lucas character. He’s definitely up there with Han, Lando and Indy to me and those guys are the cream of the crop. Seeing this one finally also made his fate in MORE all the more sadder.

  42. Broddie, Le Mat really shines in More. I predict you will love it.

  43. More trivia: Suzanne Somers (later mega-famous for “Three’s Company” and infomercials, and probably totally unknown now to anyone under 30) was the elusive blonde whom Richard Dreyfuss never quite catches up to. Charlie Martin Smith was 2 for 2 in 1973, with a memorable shot-to-shit death scene in Peckinpah’s PAT GARRETT AND BILLY THE KID. Lucas reportedly modeled Paul Le Mat’s John Milner partly on his film school buddy John Milius.

    The “where are they now” tags for the character seem a little obvious and silly now (the thoughtful Dreyfuss character “is a writer who now lives in Canada” — code for “he was an antiwar activist who left the country to escape the draft”), but it was a relatively fresh touch at the time. Like the continual stream-of-consciousness oldies soundtrack and putting “American” in the title to imply a larger metaphor, it seems cliched because so many other movies used the same gimmick later on.

    HAPPY DAYS — Jesus! A show that was even more moronic than the Kardashians and Duck Dynasty.

  44. Whoa so that means if Milner had lived for ANOTHER AMERICAN GRAFFITI set decades later he probably would’ve morphed into John Goodman’s BIG LEBOWSKI character. Mind officially blown.

  45. To answer the question from a while ago, if George Lucas and AMERICAN GRAFFITI were household names at the time:

    Star Wars (1977) Original Trailer

    Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher Written and Directed by George Lucas May 25, 1977

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