I’m not going to lie and try to pretend like I’m super excited for Disney Channel’s latest musically charged teen movie, Teen Beach Movie. Ever since High School Musical, these made-for-TV movies have left an awful taste in my mouth and not because they’re awful or anything like that. For what they are and who the target audience is, even I – a cynical man in his early 20s – can see there is value here. But when I actually sit down and what these things, I end up feeling awkward. There’s something uncomfortable about watching a movie on the Disney Channel, a place supposedly kid friendly, and see such blatant sexuality.
When THR released the new photo from Teen Beach Movie, I had to avert my eyes several times. There is something about it that is just off. Maybe it’s the way the guy pictured is posing, but I get chills looking at it. And that’s just a still image. Knowing this movie is heavily set at a beach – Brady and McKenzie (Ross Lynch and Maia Mitchell respectively) are surfers mysteriously finding themselves in a classic beach-party movie, Wet Side Story – I just know there’s going to be plenty of young, attractive men and women in bathing suits. They’ll probably be wet too. All I can think is, “Come on, Disney. Really? You’re better than this.”
When did I become so prudish? The funny thing is, I don’t I am a prude. I love HBO and all the sex and nudity that comes with it. But I just expect something more wholesome from Disney. I’m probably coming off like a total mad man; I’m okay with that. On the plus side, Teen Beach Movie has bikers in it, who are facing off with the surfers for control of the beach. That should be… interesting. Below you can watch a clip from the song “Cruisin’ for a Bruisin’” performed by Lynch. You can see the movie’s 1960s influences, even if the song is heavily processed.
Garrett Clayton, Grace Phipps, John Deluca, Chrissie Fit, Barry Bostwick, Kevin Chamberlin and Steve Valentine also star. Teen Beach Movie debuts Friday, July 19, with the 12-song soundtrack realeasing Tuesday, July 16