Every film from Roger Ebert's "Great Movies" essays.
Saturday Night Fever
Nineteen-year-old Tony Manero lives for Saturday nights at the local disco, where he's king of the dance floor. But outside of the club, things don't look so rosy. At home, he fights constantly with his father and has to compete with his family's starry-eyed view of his older brother, a priest. Then, he meets Stephanie at the disco and they agree to dance together in a competition. Stephanie resists Tony's attempts to romance her, as she aspires to greater things; she is moving across the river to Manhattan. Gradually, Tony also becomes disillusioned with the life he is leading and he and Stephanie decide to help one another to start afresh
There are movies that manage to capture the times they are portraying perfectly. Saturday Night Fever is so seventies you can almost smell the Hai Karate and Brut oozing from the pores of John Travolta's Tony Manero, the undisputed king of disco dancing in his native Brooklyn. That however is where the fairy-tales of the local kid from the neighborhood branching out as a star end. This isn't Glee, there are no happy endings here among the flick-knives and the tortured Catholic upbringing of our Italian/American brothers. Travolta and his brooding good looks and snake-like hips do catch the eye on the dance-floor, but this is about so much more than just that. Yes there are some incredible dance sequences…
Review In A Nutshell:
Saturday Night Fever follows the story of a young man from Brooklyn, Tony Manero, who has a passion for dancing and frequently hangs out with his friends. He then signs himself up in a dancing competition hosted in his favorite club, 2001 Odyssey, with a talented woman who loves dancing as much as he does.
A few years ago, when I was around 15-16 years old, I was into the trends that were found during the time, and one of those included dancing. Most of my life during that time was preoccupied by these trends as I truly wanted to be perfect at it, and show my "skills" off with any chance I get. Though I…
Future viewings will determine if the slight reservations I have with this are actually just reservations with the disco aesthetic itself. Either way, this is a pretty masterful, harrowing character study that somehow sneaked its way into the pop culture fabric in a way that few harrowing character studies do (this is like the disco Taxi Driver!). Good movie, wish I'd first watched it years ago.
I watched this so that I could watch Staying Alive, and I'm watching Staying Alive so that I can listen to the new episode of How Did This Get Made (a tremendously funny movie podcast) where they cover it. I'm sure Staying Alive will be just the worst. But hey, this was pretty good.
it's a little troublesome that there doesn't seem to be any honor here in a working-class life, presented as an almost entirely hopeless dead end, something to be escaped at all costs. but if the men in this community feel like they've got limited options, the movie goes out of its way to alert you to the trap women (and minorities) are facing. the guys shirk responsibility with alarming regularity: leaving the priesthood, quitting a job or being unemployed, you can get out of that stuff as long as you don't get "tied down" by an unplanned pregnancy. but for the women "either you're a nice girl, or you're a cunt". pretty quietly crushing, especially a late, momentary contrast between disco nightclub lights and those on a squad car.
There are still some people out there labouring under the misapprehension that Saturday Night Fever is essentially Grease at the disco, a teenybopper delight crumbling under the weight of cheese and stereotype that in hindsight we now view the disco phenomenon as hopelessly being in possession of.
These people have clearly never actually seen Saturday Night Fever.
It's a grubby, foul mouthed, shocking blue collar delight about a man who lives for his weekends. He may be a loser day to day, but he's a king in the clubs, with all the arrogance and crassness that such a lofty position among your contemporaries entails - it's a working class dream and its message of momentary pleasures gleaned from the very depths of a scummy, over populated inner city existence still resonates to this day.
Like Mean Streets with dancing.
Viewing this film is like viewing an exhibit at a museum. It captures a slice in time of American history that is so iconic -- the Disco age. The plot is a little muddled at times trying to cover too many topics: family, religion, growing up, cultural differences, misogyny, and living in NYC. John Travolta's performance was worthy of his Oscar nomination and he was surprisingly attractive in the film especially when scantily clad. This film definitely has earned its place in cinematic history.
Despite being such a pop culture phenomenon, it still holds up so well today because it is a focus on character first and foremost. The dance, style and spectacle, despite all its popularity, is actually something mocked in the film as Tony Manero comes to discover his selfish, shallow narcissism is the root of much of the strife of his generation. Kind of amazing that a film as iconic as Saturday Night Fever features a lead that's a godless, actively homophobic, sexist showboat who also happens to be an attempted rapist. That he comes to understand his own derelict morality by the end of the film is a refreshing bit of humanism in a film that's mostly remembered as some hedonistic celebration of pissing away your 9 to 5 earnings at the club every weekend.
Somehow it manages to be engaging from beginning to end, even though I don't know why. And here's the kicker: I watched this movie all the time when I was 9 and 10. The horrible sequel, too. I don't care about disco, and never have, so why the hell is a super-dated snapshot of Tony Manero's life so viscerally enticing to me? Just is. Go figure.
Projected at home on a lazy Saturday afternoon with Maxim and Yuki.
Entirely different than any of its iconography would make you think it is. Really intense, and Travolta is great.
Like Rocky/Don Jon meets Silver Linings Playbook. the first half is basically perfect. The second half is also good, and not hopelessly depressing. I have a feeling this movie was part of the happy ending revolution that Rocky and Star Wars were a part of. One of the best aspects of this movie (aside from how likable Travolta is and how well directed it is) is the love triangle which you like both sides of. Makes the movie very engrossing and enjoyable. And the dancing is really awesome too.
Tony Manero lives for Saturday nights where he's king of the dance floor, but he hangs out too much with his friends who also happen to be rapists. Tony also gets that rapist urge once in a while, when he's really upset.
Tony just wants more out of life, ya know. He feels stuck and wants something more. He's sick of all the bullshit. This is what's racing through his mind when he's brooding while the girl who's heart he broke is gang raped in the back of the car and then he blames her for letting it happen. He's just so much better than all of this! That's why its a good thing there's always smart girls like Stephanie…
Džon Travolta je došao da đuska na vašim ekranima i nema nameru da prestane.
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Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!