Three notes: One, I watched Saturday Night Fever on Saturday, December 22nd, in celebration of the apocalypse that never came the day before. Ah, ah, ah, ah, stayin’ alive, stayin’ alive. Two, this is my last film review for the year of 2012, but there are equally important posts appearing during the remainder of the year, including five blogger interviews. Three, Happy Christmas Eve (that is, if you recognize the holiday).
Bottom Line: It’s a disease that reaches both the soul and the tappin’ feet, but neither the brain nor the heart.
Directed by: John Badham
Tony Manero: John Travolta
Also Starring: Denny Dillon, Donna Pescow, Karen Lynn Gorney, Paul Pape, Sam J. Coppola
“Whether you’re a brother or whether you’re a mother,
You’re stayin’ alive, stayin’ alive,
Feel the city breakin’ and everybody shakin’,
And we’re stayin’ alive, stayin’ alive…”
–”Stayin’ Alive” by Bee Gees
Believe it or not, disco music is still around and very popular today. It’s only evolved into a genre known as dubstep, in which almost any computer can generate offbeat, albeit energizing instrumentals. With an appreciation for this modern generation of dance rhythms, Saturday Night Fever is highly enjoyable, almost definitive of its own title. Back in the 1970s, the soundtrack was manna from heaven to younger audiences. It remains one of the most prestigious recordings ever compiled for a film, due to irresistible hits such as the Bee Gees’s “Stayin’ Alive”, KC and the Sunshine Band’s “Boogie Shoes”, the Trammps’s “Disco Inferno”, and several others. The selections are paralleled by a very scarce number of soundtracks, such as those from American Graffiti and the later-appearing Dirty Dancing. But beyond the musical palette, the film itself is near shallow fun. Placed beside such spectacles as American Graffiti and Dirty Dancing, films with equal appreciation for style and substance, Saturday Night Fever disappears into obscurity.