45 years ago I graduated from Davis Senior High School. I went off to Sacramento State College and suddenly was able to see any current movie at any time during the day or at night. I loved the relevancy of movies that were addressing social issues at the turn of the decade. These four actors we celebrity and the topic inferred by the title appeared scandalous. I had to see it!
Roger Ebert reviewed the movie in December, 1969: "'Bob and Carol and Ted and Alice' isn't really about wife swapping at all, but about the epidemic of moral earnestness that's sweeping our society right now. For some curious reason, we suddenly seem compelled to tell the truth in our personal relationships."
The movie began with a retreat at Esalen Institute, a place where participants would often indulge in nudity and encounter groups; seeking a "truth". The movie was fun and easy to watch although there were moments of intense confrontation between the four characters.
What I remember most from the movie came at the end with the promenade of people walking side-by-side gazing at each other accompanied by the song "What the World Needs Now Is Love" (Hal David and Burt Bacharach, sung by Jackie DeShannon). I was swept away and teary sitting in my seat observing and feeling the song’s simple message. I saw the movie three times to experience this moment again and again.
Now, the song is made relevant in the aftermath of the Orlando massacre last June. Broadway performers came together with glorious voices in a chorale to sing: "Broadway for Orlando". And, again I am observing and feeling the song's simple message.
It is easy to say the words . . . perhaps we need to find our promenade and take a moment to gaze into each other's eyes in Love Sweet Love.