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XANADU - 1 Slime
Rated PG
Copyright 1980 Universal Pictures
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 'a long time ago'

The Characters:  

  • Kira - Olivia Newton John! Muse and organic mood ring supreme, one moment she's glowing blue, then orange, etc.
  • Sonny - Starving artist and nice guy, except he throws all his trash out the window.
  • Danny - Gene Kelly! Rich man who is unhappy with life until deciding to build Xanadu.
  • Simpson - Sonny's old boss, pretty much a run of the mill evil corporate overlord.
  • The Other Starving Artists - Sonny's friends.
  • Dancers - Also the daughters of Zeus, after noticing their ethnic diversity I'd say he gets around.

Buy It!

The Plot: 

What has Olivia Newton John, Gene Kelly, roller skates, lots of glowing blue people, quasi disco music, and never ends?

Exactly - Hell.

Living in this fairy tale torture chamber is Sonny, he is an artist with talent, at painting album covers at least. This is why Kira, daughter of Zeus and inspiration for fine art everywhere, decides he is the only one who can make Xanadu happen. With Danny providing venture capital of course. All of this nicely explains the decline of Greek civilization, Zeus and his siblings are spending their time opening roller skate dance clubs. Meanwhile the Greek population is burning goats at a furious pace hoping for a little help against these Roman fellows. ("Could we have another Alexander please, this disco thing you turned us on to is very nice, but now everyone else wants to kick our ass.") Did I mention the two lovers briefly change into a Don Bluth animation? Where's a bucket of dip when you need it...

This review is dedicated to Jenn Reinhart, recently my friend Todd and the young lady exchanged vows. Love works in odd ways, couldn't you have found a woman with less offensive social problems? (Jenn likes this movie.) Making body noises in crowded elevators maybe?

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • Artists are litterbugs.
  • Most Skittles commercials were inspired by Olivia Newton John.
  • Gene Kelly can play the clarinet.
  • Mopeds are slower than roller skating women.
  • Dubbing tap scenes was beyond 1980's technology.
  • Gene Kelly does not look good in a pink pimp suit.
  • Zeus can't tell time.
  • If you use the same group of dancers over and over the one Asian girl is going to stand out.

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • 1 min - Let me guess, each time the changing craft orbits we get one title. Darn, I'm right...
  • 5 mins - Where in the hell did we get dancing blue people from?
  • 15 mins - How did Gene Kelly get to the pier so fast?
  • 24 mins - Enough with the screwy dissolves.
  • 37 mins - Maybe I'll get lucky and these two morons will skate into that huge fan.
  • 49 mins - You got your 80's all over my 40's. Hey, your 40's are all over my 80's...
  • 60 mins - That disturbed me.
  • 73 mins - Dude, skate through the wall, it'll work! Do it! Yes, build up speed, go, go! What the heck, that worked? Gads I hate this film.
  • 90 mins - Olivia Newton John is singing country, everything going black, mommy...

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

FileDialog
Green Music Note xanadu1.wav Sonny: "I run into this girl this morning. Never saw before in my life; she kisses me and disappears."
Danny: "What's so weird about that?"
Green Music Note xanadu2.wav Simpson: "If you start making changes, then other people start making changes, and before you know it you have a lot of people running around doing what they want to do. That's not a company."
Green Music Note xanadu3.wav Kira: "You're supposed to be an artist. Use your imagination."
Sonny: "Oh thanks a lot; I'm all out."
Green Music Note xanadu4.wav Kira: "I come from Mount Halycon. I'm the daughter of Zeus."
Green Music NoteTheme Song Listen to a clip from the soundtrack.

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 

ImageImageImage
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 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Clipxanadu1.mpg - 1.9m
The movie starts with dancing blue people. I am saying my prayers and looking for some hard alcohol to dull the pain.

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Comments:Write CommentPages: 1 ... 3 4 [5] 6 7 ... 13
Xanadu
Reply #33. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by Swamprat
Okay...My daughter had to rent this one to see why I was ranting on this site about it. It's been 22 years since I saw this thing in its entirety. I have to admit, it's not as bad on the TV screen as it was on the movie screen...it's a lot smaller...and that's the only improvement I could find. It still SUCKS. I had forgotten many of the little snippits that are real "gems". Watch the phallic image of the fake palm tree rising up from the floor when the two boneheads go skating by. Then they skate up the fake outhouse-looking little building and float off the other side like little roller fairies in the night. I thought my daughter was going to throw up through the pinball scene...and the freaks in the clothing store...and when Livy pops up in the late-late-show on TV and talks to Sonny. My daughter and I both have a keen interest in Classical Mythology...when Zeus and Hera have their little bit at the end of the film we nearly puked in unision. The wife, of course, sat and enjoyed it...just as she had some 22 years ago when we sat in the dark holding hands watching this tripe flickering away in all its big screen glory. I did learn something new and interesting this time around. The lead dancer in the muses was Sandahl Bergman. It was her second film from what I've read since. She was a Bob Fossie dancer and went on to play mosty Amazon Blonde roles in s**t movies. She was Arnold Swartzanager's Warrior Chick in Conan the Barbarian....since then she's been appearing in 'real' crap...(I know, it's hard to believe.) I know a lot of people love this movie. There are also a lot of people who eat bugs and collect shiney objects. I personally love the film Paint Your Wagon...I know it's just as bad, if not worse, than Xanadu. It had 'real' stars who could act but couldn't sing. I know there's something perverse about Lee Marvin wandering a muddy street singing show tunes, but still I love it. I even bought the soundtrack years ago...at least I don't eat bugs. I certainly don't begrudge the people who seem to love Xanadu. I notice that most of them love it the same way I love Paint Your Wagon. They know it's crap, but it's just a helluva lotta fun to watch. I'm kinda sorry I can't feel the same way about it...for me, it still, just plain sucks.
Xanadu
Reply #34. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Lisa Ann
I loved this movie! It is all about fun. I liked all the animation and the colorful sets. It was creative in a 70's kinda way. The clothing and hairstyles are great! God, they sure beat the current trends of today (picture Goth and retro-slob-hippie by comparison----yuk!) I liked all the somewhat corny music. It was all for fun anyway. I also think that ONJ was absolutely gorgeous. She didn't have to act over the top slutty to be super sexy either (picture Brittney Spears, and the likes of todays youth)! Watching movies like this sure make me miss the way things were...
Xanadu
Reply #35. Posted on October 03, 2001, 02:08:09 PM by Ferry
It is  one of the best movies i ever saw. And i think a lot of people think the same. It is a Fantsay film and the first time i saw it in 1983. And i like Olivia Newton-John very much.
Xanadu
Reply #36. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Jenn
I have the record framed in my room.  I have the cassette in my car.  This movie was impossibly cool to all young girls in the late 70's/early 80's.  There is no denying that.  Don't even try.  Having said that, I watch this movie now and realize, that yes, it is in fact tripe.  However, I hotly anticipate the days when movies like this (roller skating meets disco meets musical meets greek mythology meets studio 54) will be made again (oh yeah, it'll happen!).  ELO rules!
Xanadu
Reply #37. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by
My turn.  The worse thing about the movie was Michael Beck, who read his lines like he was suffering from a terrible hang over, or he just couldn't be less interested.  

Gene Kelly...well, he's my beloved.  And, for a then 65 year old man, did a wonderful job dancing with Olivia.  That was, in my opinion, the only good part of the movie.

Sadly, even Mr. Kelly admitted to Xanadu being, "A pretty bad movie."

Xanadu
Reply #38. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Dag
This is one of those really crappy movies that you just can't help but love! Rather like Are You Being Served - The Movie. Hilarious stuff! BTW, I think ONJ now lives a quiet life in Byron Bay (Aust). The old bag.
Xanadu
Reply #39. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Amanda
I am merely 17, I wasnt around when this movie was made. And even though I was too young to understand the tragic misled style of the 80's I am old enough to know a cheesy crap movie when I see one. This movie, although it excedes the limitations on cheesiness, offers a neverseen before plot until its time. It stars one of the best dancers ever aside from Fred Astaire, and one of the most awesome singers in the world. Those of you who have to choke down some alcohol while watching this movie, get a grip, if you dont like it dont watch it and stop complaining...It was the 80's cheesiness and bland plotlines are to be expected...what the hell did you think the movie was about anyway?
Xanadu
Reply #40. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:03 PM by Bob
Well Andrew you obviously do not possess the required lack of culture to enjoy this movie.  You have my condolences that you will never enjoy the finer things in life.

                      Bob
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