HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Wild Wild West
Cure
Doraemon: Nobita and the Green Giant Legend
Locke the Superman
Psycho
Magic Flute, The
Top Secret
Ghost Punting
Hitman's Bodyguard, The
Touch, The
Akko's Secret
Backfire
Loving Vincent
Adventures of the Wilderness Family, The
Plot of Fear
Desperate Chase, The
Baskin
Time and Tide
X - Night of Vengeance
Bunny Drop
Acts of Vengeance
Asura: The City of Madness
In This Corner of the World
Dirty Pair: Project Eden
Pyewacket
Disaster Artist, The
God of Cookery, The
Zatoichi and the Chess Player
Ingrid Goes West
Boys from Fengkuei, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Wash All This Scum Off the Streets: Vigilante Movies
Force the Issue: Star Wars' Tricky Middle Prequels and Sequels
Rediscovered: The Avengers - Tunnel of Fear on DVD
Sword Play: An Actor's Revenge vs Your Average Zatoichi Movie
Super Sleuths: The Rivals of Sherlock Holmes on DVD
Stop That, It's Silly: The Ends of Monty Python
They're All Messed Up: Night of the Living Dead vs Land of the Dead
The House, Black Magic and an Oily Maniac: 3 from 70s Weird Asia
80s Meet Cute: Something Wild vs Into the Night
Interview with The Unseen Director Gary Sinyor
Wrong Forgotten: Is Troll 2 Still a Thing?
Apocalypse 80s UK: Threads and When the Wind Blows
Movie Flop to Triumphant TV Revival: Twin Peaks and The League of Gentlemen
Driving Force: The Golden Age of American Car Chases
Madness in his Method: Jim Carrey and Andy Kaufman
   
 
  Copacabana Music And Passion Were Always The FashionBuy this film here.
Year: 1985
Director: Waris Hussein
Stars: Barry Manilow, Annette O'Toole, Estelle Getty, James T. Callahan, Andra Akers, Silvana Gallardo, Joseph Bologna, Ernie Sabella, Cliff Osmond, Dwier Brown, Stanley Brock, Clarence Felder, Hamilton Camp
Genre: Musical, Drama, Romance, TV Movie
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Nowadays in the eighties, the Copacabana is a disco, but there's someone who sits there at the bar nursing a drink who has been there since the forties, and she is Lola Lamar (Annette O'Toole). She has her own reasons for sitting alone every night, because sometimes she can gaze at the dancers and see a ghostly figure at the piano, the figure of Tony Starr (Barry Manilow), who was the great love of her life until... Well, let's go back in time to the place they met at a radio quiz show for singers, in which they competed against one another for the grand prize.

The Barry Manilow song Copacabana was one of those story songs, like for example Excerpt from a Teenage Opera by Keith West or Camouflage by Stan Ridgeway, where no matter your opinion of its quality you simply had to listen to it all the way through once it had started, such was the compulsive nature of hearing the way its tuneful yarn played out. With Manilow at the height of his powers during the eighties, U.S. entertainment mogul Dick Clark's production company decided to bring one of his best known songs to the small screen.

A Christmas extravaganza was what they had in mind, but the reaction outside of the legions of "Fanilows", the army of ladies of a certain age who made up Barry's following, was not so great. In fact the general view was that this TV movie was prime cheese from beginning to end, although not many complained that as far as adapting the story of the song went, they didn't even stick to the plot that well, softening what was a rather hard-edged and unsentimental yarn in the original and making it look like a pilot for a musical television series. That was apart from the way it ended, which scuppered any chance of a sequel.

Bazza gets to croon a few tunes, all of which end with him getting louder and louder until he throws his arms wide and practically yells the last line, but for the most part it was the narrative and his dubious thespian endeavours which concerned him here (weirdly the title song gets short shrift with a couple of verses). He plays a nice guy everyman who is seeking an outlet for his songs, and after meeting Lola on that quiz he falls for her and persuades the singer to team up with him for a nightclub act; though she's reluctant at first, leaving behind her taxi dancing career is not something she feels too bereft about. But there are complications even as they get their break at the, yes, Copacabana club, when another man takes an interest in Lola.

He is gangster Rico (Joseph Bologna), and he has a job for her in Havana which sounds too good to be true, which it is. Tony goes in the huff with her so her only option is to take Rico up on his offer, and there's more of a thriller aspect to what comes after, although it was getting further and further away from the simplicity of the source song. They had to fill a two hour timeslot (with ads) after all, so you also got business with Golden Girl Estelle Getty as Tony's mother who is apparently present to make him look like an even nicer guy when he treats her so well, and Tony's estranged father (James T. Callahan) re-enters his life to boot for more complications that don't amount to much. The multi-talented O'Toole got to sing and dance, and in truth seemed more at home acting than her co-star, leaving you with a curio from a time when the belief that every singer had an star acting/singing vehicle in them was prevalent, but starting to die out other than the odd exception (and little wonder).
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3009 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which film has the best theme song?
Spectre
The Ups and Downs of a Handyman
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
  Butch Elliot
Graeme Clark
George White
Andrew Pragasam
Enoch Sneed
  Mark Scampion
  Frank Michaels
  Rachel Franke
   

 

Last Updated: