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Great American Graffiti

Cindy Williams, who died last week at the age of 75, is remembered for her role in the “Laverne & Shirley” sitcom, on television from 1976 to 1983. Fans may be unaware that Williams also appeared on the big screen in “American Graffiti,” which turns 50 this year. This movie, directed by George Lucas, captures an era and its music like no other.

The film fades in to “Rock Around the Clock,” by Bill Haley and His Comets. The year is 1962 and Steve Bolander (Ron Howard), Curt Henderson (Richard Dreyfuss), John Milner (Paul Le Mat) and Terry Fields (Charles Martin Smith) congregate outside Burger City, a drive-in joint in an unnamed California city, where the carhops glide around on roller skates.

Bolander hands Henderson a scholarship check from the Moose Lodge for $2,000, but the recipient is unsure if he will be joining Steve in college back East. That raises an issue for Steve’s girlfriend Laurie Henderson, Curt’s sister, wonderfully played by Cindy Williams. Steve wants to “date other people” while they are apart, claiming it would “strengthen our relationship.” Laurie claims “I’m not upset” but she is. Read more >

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