HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Nobody
Prisoners of the Ghostland
Duel to the Death
Mandibles
Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands
Yakuza Princess
Djinn, The
New Order
Triggered
Claw
Original Cast Album: Company
Martyrs Lane
Paper Tigers, The
Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It, The
Hall
ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt, The
Collini Case, The
Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard
Snake Girl and the Silver-Haired Witch, The
Superhost
Plan A
When I'm a Moth
Tigers Are Not Afraid
Misha and the Wolves
Yellow Cat
Shorta
Knocking
Bloodthirsty
When the Screaming Starts
Sweetie, You Won't Believe It
Lions Love
Demonic
Night Drive
Luca
Prospect
Toll, The
Last Bus, The
Purple Sea
Pebble and the Boy, The
Mosquito State
   
 
Newest Articles
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
70s Sitcom Dads: Bless This House and Father Dear Father on Blu-ray
Going Under: Deep Cover on Blu-ray
Child's Play: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 3 on DVD
Poetry and Motion: Great Noises That Fill the Air on DVD
Too Much to Bear: Prophecy on Blu-ray
Truth Kills: Blow Out on Blu-ray
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
Freewheelin' - Bob Dylan: Odds and Ends on Digital
Never Sleep: The Night of the Hunter on Blu-ray
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
   
 
  Staying Alive Dancing Fool
Year: 1983
Director: Sylvester Stallone
Stars: John Travolta, Cynthia Rhodes, Finola Hughes, Steve Inwood, Julie Bovasso, Charles Ward, Steve Bickford, Patrick Brady, Norma Donaldson, Jesse Doran, Joyce Hyser, Deborah Jenssen, Robert Martini, Sarah M. Miles, Tony Munafo, Kurtwood Smith, Frank Stallone
Genre: Musical, DramaBuy from Amazon
Rating:  3 (from 2 votes)
Review: Tony Manero (John Travolta) is still dreaming of achieving his big break, five years after being king of the disco dancefloor. He now works as a waiter in a nightclub where he has his own small fan club of loving ladies, but cannot make this translate to popularity on the stage. Tony also has a job as a dance instructor, but attends rehearsals for Broadway shows in the hope that he will be picked for one of them, in the chorus line if nowhere else. Not today, though, as he is let down once again, but his fellow dancer girlfriend Jackie (Cynthia Rhodes) has faith in him, for who knows what might be around the corner?

Saturday Night Fever was such a huge success that it was natural, after its star Travolta was seeing his career as a leading man on the slide, that he should star in the sequel, Staying Alive, a potential hit with the promise of the familiar formula named after one of the original's most popular songs. So The Bee Gees were brought back to provide a few tunes, Sylvester Stallone was brought in to co-write and direct between Rocky movies, and it was all wrapped up in some of the latest dance routines essayed by Travolta. How could it possibly fail? Or, as those who saw it were asking, how could it possibly succeed?

Well, the short answer was that it didn't, and though it was one of the top ten moneymakers of its year, posterity was not kind and it went down in movie history as one of the worst sequels of all time. But the era of the eighties has passed and we can now look at this film with fresh eyes, seeing this for what it is: absolutely ridiculous. In fact, by the finale Staying Alive has achieved a fever all right, a kind of delirium of camp couldn't possibly be regarded as the slightest bit gay. No, not with Travolta dressed in a loincloth, muscular, shaven-chested and well-oiled, being whipped by men in studded leather, I mean, come on, what's homosexual about that? Let's give them the benefit of the doubt and suppose they really were than innocent.

Before we reach that grand finale of unintentional hilarity, however, there's the rest of the plot to be endured, and coming from Stallone it bears more than a passing resemblance to a Rocky movie, surely no coincidence. Only with dancing instead of people knocking seven bells out of each other (though Tony does receive a cut above his eye in time-honoured pugilist fashion). What the majority of this is concerned with is a love triangle between Tony, Jackie and new girl in his life Laura (Finola Hughes) who happens to be the star of the show our hero finally gets a role in. In an example of inverted snobbery, wealthy and pampered Laura is bitchy and cruel, leading on poor, deluded Tony only to run hot and cold with him at every opportunity - of course, she has to be English.

Ah, but Laura can help Tony's career, so with Jackie sent into frequent huffs as the star wraps him around her little finger we have to sit through acres of scenes of Tony's wounded pride, and with himself being his biggest fan after all, that's some suffering. Especially on the part of the audience, but there are rewards, the chief one being Satan's Alley, the highlight of the film and the big opening night for the cast. For British viewers in the eighties, I imagine Staying Alive would have looked like Travolta joining Hot Gossip, or even The Brian Rogers Connection, but here the killer moves are executed with the same gusto as a glitzy Las Vegas entertainment not unlike the showcases of nineties notoriety Showgirls, complete with dry ice and much writhing, all scored to the classic tunes of, no, not The Bee Gees (though they did contribute uncharacteristically bland songs to the soundtrack), but one Frank Stallone - that's right, the director's brother. As amusingly ludicrous as the climax is, it's too high a price to pay for sitting through the rest of the movie, which is essentially the story of an idiot. Who dances.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4144 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (1)


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 star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
Andrew Pragasam
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: