There's Always Vanilla

name = There's Always Vanilla

caption = Title Screen
director = George A. Romero
producer = John A. Russo
Russell Streiner
writer = Rudy Ricci
starring = Raymond Laine
Judith Ridley
Johanna Lawrence
cinematography = George A. Romero
music = Jim Drake
Steve Gorn
Mike Marracino
editing = George A. Romero
distributor = flagicon|USA Anchor Bay Entertainment
"(DVD Release)"
released = December 1971
runtime = 93 min.
language = English
budget = $70,000 USD estimated
imdb_id = 0166843

"There's Always Vanilla" (1971) was George A. Romero's second motion picture and, as of 2007, his only romantic comedy. It is currently available in full only in the Region 1 Anchor Bay Entertainment release of "Season of the Witch". The film has also been circulated under the alternate title, "The Affair".

Romero himself has stated that he considers this film to be his worst, often referring to it simply as "Some other piece of crap."


"There's Always Vanilla" follows the life of Chris Bradley (Raymond Laine) a former U.S. Army serviceman whom has become a drifter and makes money from pimping to guitar playing. Chris returns to his home city of Pittsburgh and visits his father who runs a baby food factory. After an evening out of drinking at a local bar, and visiting an old girlfriend of Chris' named Terri Terrific (Johanna Lawrence), Mr. Bradley wants Chris to abandon his new lifestyle and return to the family business of making baby food, but Chris refuses.

On the street at a local train station, Chris meets Lynn (Judith Ridley billed as Judith Streiner) a beautiful young woman who works as a model and actress in local TV commercials. Chris charms his way into Lynn's life and moves in with her. At first their relationship is a pleasant escape from daily life. But when Lynn starts to resent supporting the loafing Chris, she motivates him into getting a steady job. But then, Lynn finds out that she's pregnant and decides on getting an abortion without telling Chris knowing how irresponsible he is.

Chris does get a job at a small advertising firm. But when he's given an account to advertise enlistments for the U.S. Army, he quits, clearly displaying his resentment of his past lifestyle. Lynn in the meantime goes back on getting an abortion, abandons Chris, and moves in with a high school boyfriend who agrees to marry her and raise her baby as his own. His romance with Lynn ruined and his lifestyle destroyed, Chris swallows his pride and moves back in with his father, still unable to decide what to do with his life. But Chris has more encouragement after a talk with Mr. Bradley who explains to Chris that life is like an ice cream parlor, and that of all of life's most exotic flavors to chose from, there is always vanilla that one can fall back on.

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