Who is afraid of Venita Wolf?
Catalina Caper (1967): 5 out of 10: Catalina Caper is a lightweight piece of fluff. Overall, however, it is an enjoyable lightweight piece of fluff. It is a beach party movie taking place on Catalina Island (natch). The plot (for what it is) consists of a Jack Benny espy selling a stolen ancient Chinese scroll to a shady ethnic type. (A Greek tycoon). He brings his wife and teenage son along on the trip. The kid wants his parents to go straight, and the tycoon inexplicably wants to steal the scroll (even though he is there to buy it).
The kid meets up with some friends, runs into a strange depressed Swedish girl, and the whole gang is serenaded by Little Richard looking about four drinks in.
Highlights include a very young Lyle Waggoner as the depressed Swedish girl’s boyfriend and main henchman for greedy Greek tycoon. The other highlight is the delightful Venita Wolf, who would go on to be a guest actor on Star Trek and a Playboy model. She brightens up the movie with an overwhelming pixie cuteness. (She plays one of the gang’s sisters and Betty to the depressed Swedish girl’s Veronica). It is a surprise she was not more successful as an actress.
Lowlights include horrible pratfall comedy and a plot that would be considered too lightweight for a first season Scooby-Doo episode.
Mystery Science Theater 3000 Ep. 204, Catalina Caper, (1967): 8 out of 10: I did not suffer alone as I had Joel and the bots along with me. They make good sport of the overwhelming whiteness of the film (Even for a Beach movie from the sixties) and the poor music choices and pratfalls. I have also read reports they cut a good chunk out of the movies running time, making it much more watchable.
Overall, a good time, especially if you take Joel and the bots along for the ride.