It has been almost two weeks since my latest visit to Graceland and less than a week since I posted the essay for this year’s trip. Earlier this week, I was going through the channel guide on my television and saw that the movie “This is Elvis” was on. This documentary was released in 1981. I remember going to see it in the theater. I remember seeing people crying in the parking lot after the movie. I also remember it being one of the first movies I ever saw on HBO. Back in 1981, I didn’t have any Elvis records and I felt like I needed some. I purchased the soundtrack album to this film because it had most of the songs I really cared to have.
When I saw it in the channel guide, I decided to watch it. It had only been on a few minutes so I was able to see nearly the entire film. The home movies taken at Graceland were the most interesting thing to me in the movie this time. I found myself trying to identify the rooms of the house. Some of the early clips looked like Elvis was entertaining in his living room. There was footage taken in the room with the pool table in the basement. There was also some video of them playing in the swimming pool. In the clip, there was a brick barbeque grill next to the pool that is no longer there. You could also see the meditation gardens in the background. The scene that I was most fascinated with shows Priscilla walking down the stairs to the front hallway. I found it interesting because the stairway is decorated today exactly like it was in the clip. This clip appears in the documentary immediately after the footage of their wedding and before Lisa Marie was born. The reason I found it so fascinating was that this part of the house was never redecorated from about the time when they were married in 1967 until the day he died. There are some blue curtains at the top of the stairs that I had snapped a picture of during the tour that you can see in the clip. There is also a picture of Elvis at the base of the stairs that you see in this clip and another one of my pictures.
This year during my visit, I took notes on my iPhone throughout the day as reminders for when I wrote my essay. Watching this movie and reviewing my notes after writing my essay reminded me of something Nick said during the tour. We had been through most of the rooms in the house and Nick made this observation about the audio portion of the tour: “Every room is a room for Elvis to relax and have fun in”.
Singer, Songwriter, Entertainer, Storyteller