Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Xanadu (1980)

Greek muses meet rollerskating and Olivia Newton-John. Throw in love at first sight and some gag worthy lines, and you've got yourself Xanadu. I needed to get back into dance flicks, and I heard the Broadway musical version of Xanadu had done pretty well, so I figured, why the heck not? I loved that this 80's film gave homage to the 40's time period, contrasting the drastically different dance and music styles. I felt like I was watching a musical, with the random dance breaks and moving set pieces. Did I mention Olivia Newton-John plays a goddess named Kira, sent to be Sonny's (Michael Beck) muse, so there are tons of celestial and heavenly puns. And there's also a really cute animation sequence, probably since the filmmakers recognized their version of CGI at the time looked pretty bad. And Gene Kelly has to dance of course. What else do we expect him to do? Act?
The film was basically one big music video for Olivia Newton-John. Although I admit, I'd love to go to a club like Xanadu. Any excuse to wear neon and tight pants, I gotta jump on that. I'm not surprised in the least that this was a box office flop. There's a sequence where Kira and the muses dance and sing their way through different themes, which have no purpose narratively. Like I said, one really long music video. However, the soundtrack to the movie was a huge commercial success, featuring music from Electric Light Orchestra, Cliff Richard, and The Tubes. I'd recommend this for anyone that wants a good cheesy movie to laugh at.

Olivia Newton-John's random musical sequence. A musical already randomly jolts you in and out of suspension of disbelief. This is much worse.

No comments: