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Xanadu 1980


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#1 of 20 OFFLINE   melmax

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Posted July 16 2013 - 04:43 PM

I know this movie was a flop and now has a cult following but can anyone share there positive or negative experiences or observations at a cinema when this film was realeased? Much appreciated.


Edited by melmax, July 16 2013 - 04:52 PM.


#2 of 20 OFFLINE   Steve Tannehill

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Posted July 16 2013 - 07:21 PM

Hi David, welcome to HTF!

 

I saw a preview screening when the movie was released, and went into it cold.

 

I was surprised to find that it was a roller disco movie, although the music was hardly disco.  They must have changed the music when roller disco movies died in the months upcoming to Xanadu.

 

I liked the music a lot, I was a huge ELO fan, and I liked Olivia Newton John.  I also liked The Tubes duet with ONJ (Dancin).

 

I wish Universal would release it on blu-ray.



#3 of 20 OFFLINE   Sam Favate

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Posted July 17 2013 - 05:06 AM

IMO, the only positives from this movie were the three or four good ELO songs on the soundtrack.



#4 of 20 OFFLINE   Joel Fontenot

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Posted July 17 2013 - 08:55 AM

The best part of the movie was the soundtrack.  Nearly wore out the vinyl back in the day - the ELO side certainly got played more than the ONJ side, but at least the ONJ side had a few good tracks too.

 

I did kind of like the movie when it came out, but I was only 15 at the time.  Saw it again years later and had a totally different impression - jeez it was bad.


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#5 of 20 OFFLINE   Edwin-S

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Posted July 17 2013 - 08:59 PM

About all I remember about the film is that it had some good tracks from ELO and that ONJ was still hot on....and off.....roller skates.
"You bring a horse for me?" "Looks like......looks like we're shy of one horse." "No.......You brought two too many."

#6 of 20 OFFLINE   Ejanss

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Posted July 22 2013 - 11:03 AM

The only thing I remember from the theater is that the marketing played it up as more of a "fantasy" and less of a disco soundtrack musical.  That said, it wasn't a bad disco soundtrack musical at that, and probably the only one still enjoyable today.
(That's going on the assumption that Grease isn't disco, and Saturday Night Fever isn't a musical.)

 


I saw a preview screening when the movie was released, and went into it cold.

WARNING:  Xanadu "Expert" post ahead:

 

Was it just a week-ahead screening of the movie itself, or was it the legendary 2-hour cut that had a half hour chopped out of it after its first preview?  (For good reasons, even though that's coming from a fan.)

I've always had this curiosity to find out what was in that 2-hour cut.  .Every time a fancy "graphic" suddenly zooms at us, consider it covering another post-preview scene chopped onto the cutting room floor; the cartoon scene was to cover a completely different scene at the Hollywood Bowl, and the big medley at the end practically plays like "Edited highlights".  ONJ complained that the movie was being "rewritten every day of shooting", and at one point, the plot started out as a tribute to crumbling ancient LA art-deco from the 30's (in one scene, the characters visit the pre-restoration Egyptian Theater).  But that was  before Gene Kelly signed on, and the movie convinced itself it was "really" a 1980 new-generation tribute to what we thought 40's MGM musicals were at the time.

(Kelly seemed to be in on the joke, too--In the scene where Kelly dances through a giant pinball-machine room, I had to rewind and double-take:  Yes, it looked like Kelly was deliberately trying to homage Fred Astaire's penny-arcade dance from "Band Wagon".)

 

I like that the movie, like the 40's musicals it thought it was, will just do anything to please...And like 1985's Electric Dreams, there ARE no bad movies with ELO/Jeff Lynne numbers in them, let alone the late-70's/early-80's songs John Farrar was writing for ONJ at the time.

it's one of the movies that everyone says "Oh, sure, it's supposed to be the worst ever made!" because they've been programmed to over the last 33 years (even those to young to remember the Razzies being cute/gay about it), but when pressed, can never really put their finger on explaining WHY...It's just, y 'know, dumb that's all--And it's like roller disco, that's so 80's! 

 

I've often liked to tease haters by saying "Oh, yeah, wait, what was that movie with Gene Kelly on roller skates, and the guy was looking for this girl, and there's this big cartoon scene in the middle?...Oh, I remember:  ANCHORS AWEIGH."

 


I was surprised to find that it was a roller disco movie, although the music was hardly disco.  They must have changed the music when roller disco movies died in the months upcoming to Xanadu.

 

It also suffers from coming out in the theaters within one month of "Can't Stop the Music", the train wreck so hideous it DID kill disco.  Most people literally can't remember which was which, especially when Steve Guttenberg roller skates through CSTM's opening credits.

 

 

I wish Universal would release it on blu-ray.

 

Unfortunately, that's not going to happen, so long as everyone keeps parroting the Razzies joke, and thinking they made it up themselves.

I remember back during the days when other studios still did HTF chats, one Universal exec did the corny old Criterion April Fool joke of "We're doing a Xanadu:SE, har har".  Some fans immediately responded "Cool, are we getting those deleted scenes, and the TV documentary from 1980?  Olivia and Michael Beck are still around for commentaries, so...oh, wait, you were going for the cheap gag, weren't you? :( ".


Edited by Ejanss, July 22 2013 - 11:50 AM.


#7 of 20 OFFLINE   jcroy

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Posted July 22 2013 - 11:23 AM

It also suffers from coming out in the theaters within one month of "Can't Stop the Music", the train wreck so hideous it DID kill disco.

 

(Maybe I'm misremembering things from that time period).

 

I always thought the July 12, 1979 "Disco Sucks Night" event at Comiskey Park in Chicago was what killed disco.

 

:P


Edited by jcroy, July 22 2013 - 11:23 AM.


#8 of 20 OFFLINE   Stan

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Posted July 22 2013 - 11:53 AM

I absolutely loved it when it came out.

 

Was a manager/projectionist at a small tri-plex, so had to close down the theatres, lock the entrance doors, etc.

 

Went and ran the movie for myself at about midnight, not once but twice, in a completely empty theater. Back when small reels of film were spliced into one continuous piece of film on a platter, so played non-stop.

 

Kind of a silly movie, but it just clicked with me at the time.


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#9 of 20 OFFLINE   Steve Tannehill

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Posted July 22 2013 - 11:59 AM

I saw the release version of the movie, not the full-length version.

 

I also saw the show on Broadway in 2007.  It was fun.



#10 of 20 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted July 29 2013 - 11:49 AM

Listening to the ONJ songs makes me feel very nostalgic.



#11 of 20 OFFLINE   andySu

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Posted August 21 2014 - 06:49 AM

I wouldn't mind getting this on Laserdisc. :)



#12 of 20 OFFLINE   DP 70

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Posted August 21 2014 - 07:40 AM

I saw this film in 35mm 4 Track Magnetic Stereo at ABC Shaftsbury Ave in London it was great sound in Screen 2.I remember in Screen 1 was Gone with the Wind in 70mm, those were the days...

#13 of 20 OFFLINE   Radioman970

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Posted September 19 2014 - 06:07 PM

Watched my DVD of it not long ago and had a hell of a time. Was on top of the world with nostalgia even though I don't think I ever saw the movie only listened to the soundtrack since it came out.  The final scene is just amazingly funky and all over the place.  Cult classic for sure.

 

Would NOT upgrade. Happy with the DVD.  I got the one that came with the soundtrack CD for $5 at biglots.  Can't beat that! 


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#14 of 20 OFFLINE   andySu

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Posted September 19 2014 - 11:44 PM

Watched my DVD of it not long ago and had a hell of a time. Was on top of the world with nostalgia even though I don't think I ever saw the movie only listened to the soundtrack since it came out.  The final scene is just amazingly funky and all over the place.  Cult classic for sure.

 

Would NOT upgrade. Happy with the DVD.  I got the one that came with the soundtrack CD for $5 at biglots.  Can't beat that! 

Got a picture of your Xanadu? :)

 

I like this clip playing in DOLBY STEREO with overhead surrounds :P.

I like the tonal mix of the music. I can play this more times than STAR TREK INTO ATMOS DEAFNESS. I'm enjoying it.  :)

 

 

I like the beam up transporter effect. :P

 

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#15 of 20 OFFLINE   andySu

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Posted September 20 2014 - 01:08 AM

Rented on youtube £2.49 I don't mind its 480p looks a bit DNR but it is a Universal release.

 

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Xanadu (1980)

DOLBY STEREO / Lucasfilm Ltd THX Sound System / with overhead surrounds.

 

Dolby levels bit soft at open ELO song around -20db on Dolby CP500, I have switched the Enhance ON on the sound menu bar on the laptop with gain of about 10db so now about -10db on the LCD display with clear softer ambiance effects.

 

Got a nice bass beat on the songs with clear lyrics.  

 

The colours are making my mouth water. I think this should be grainy and on bluray with the mouth drooling colours with 3 Dolby mixes. DOLBY STEREO classical DOLBY STEREO 7.1 DOLBY STEREO Atmos PlusIIeXtra with below surround I would buy it. :P

 

I'd give Xanadu 7.5 out of 10 I enjoyed it nice bit of vintage DOLBY STEREO for the afternoon.

 

I wonder if they make Xanadu cocktail drinks I'm addicted to the film now. :P

 

 

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:wub: :P sexy.

 

 

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I like the outdoor photography nice and clear and colorful. 

 

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I liked the Don Bluth animation photochemical vintage effects that looked colourful eye candy for its time.

 

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Xanadu as sexy foxy cats in it. I and my cat approve. :P

 

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Danny, surrounded in another place with bizarre colourfull lights dazzling all around.

 

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A recognizable voice appears as Male Heavenly Voice (Wilfrid Hyde-White) My Fair Lady, Buck Rogers in 25th Century.

 

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#16 of 20 OFFLINE   Paul_Warren

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Posted September 20 2014 - 02:31 AM

Gene Kelly even then in his later years was an amazing talent the movie is still enjoyable & very 1970s which is a good thing to me ;) it will come to BD sooner or later more often than not it takes a long time to get all the music rights cleared for a home video release.

 

I have heard it can take years for those to be cleared by the studio lawyers as sometimes you come across a company that will play hardball & ask $500k to allow their (their only in they are the company who bought the rights from someone else usually!) music to be licenced :rolleyes:



#17 of 20 OFFLINE   andySu

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Posted September 20 2014 - 03:05 AM

^ Yeah, Paul, but it still looks great for youtube not complaining. At the least it should have Dolby Stereo 35mm mag track LCR MS on bluray.



#18 of 20 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted October 01 2014 - 07:11 AM

The male lead had about as much charisma as a wet noodle.



#19 of 20 OFFLINE   Vic Pardo

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Posted October 01 2014 - 11:03 AM

 

Unfortunately, that's not going to happen, so long as everyone keeps parroting the Razzies joke, and thinking they made it up themselves.

I remember back during the days when other studios still did HTF chats, one Universal exec did the corny old Criterion April Fool joke of "We're doing a Xanadu:SE, har har".  Some fans immediately responded "Cool, are we getting those deleted scenes, and the TV documentary from 1980?  Olivia and Michael Beck are still around for commentaries, so...oh, wait, you were going for the cheap gag, weren't you? :( ".

 

What's the Razzies joke?

 

 

I remember wanting to see XANADU when it came out because of Gene Kelly but I never made it to the theater. I've been wanting to see it ever since--on TV, cable, video rental, etc., but...I never did. I think I simply dread having to sit through the parts that don't have either Kelly or Olivia.



#20 of 20 OFFLINE   Ejanss

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Posted October 01 2014 - 02:04 PM

What's the Razzies joke?

 

It was one of ten Razzie Worst Picture nominations in 1980, the first year the awards were given and seemed like a novelty, and for some reason, everyone remembers it as winning--

It didn't, btw:  That year, the winner was....yyyyep, take a big ol' wild guess.   :rolleyes:  But the subtle distinction was again lost on those (and, ahem, especially those in particular) who wanted to have a  snarky 1981 laugh at disco's expense.  Even though the Farrar/Lynne songs...weren't really disco in the first place.

 

I remember wanting to see XANADU when it came out because of Gene Kelly but I never made it to the theater. I've been wanting to see it ever since--on TV, cable, video rental, etc., but...I never did. I think I simply dread having to sit through the parts that don't have either Kelly or Olivia.

 

There are a few, but they're over early.  Just think of Beck as the guy from The Warriors...Can you dig it?   :B)

Besides, AndySu just posted the entire thing twenty-two times overhead, how hard could it be?






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