Xanadu

  • Film
  • Fantasy films
0 Love It
An experience so vacuous it's almost frightening. Built around a threadbare Hollywood fairytale which has Newton-John (on roller-skates) playing a muse despatched by Zeus to help mortals realise their fantasies, it turns out in fact to be an unashamed show-case for Livvy's multifarious 'talents'. Alas, as the film grinds from one epic production routine to another, it becomes painfully clear that she can't deliver a line (the script, full of gnomic punchlines, is admittedly abysmal), hold a note (the Jeff Lynne/John Farrar songs are lowest common denominator), or step a pas de deux (despite the helping hand of Gene Kelly, who can still cut it on the dance floor). Not even Michael Beck, fresh out of The Warriors, can salvage the disaster.

Release details

Duration: 96 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Robert Greenwald
Screenwriter: Marc Reid Rubel, Richard Christian Danus
Cast: Michael Beck
Gene Kelly
Sandahl Bergman
Katie Hanley
Olivia Newton-John
James Sloyan
Dimitra Arliss

Average User Rating

4.2 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:1
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|4
1 person listening
David Fowler

Magnificent camp! An excellent remake of the far less entertaining 1946 Rita Hayworth musical "Down To Earth". Olivia is utterly without hope of Hayworth's charisma. She is however sweet and genuine and truly entertaining. She's no great dancer, but she, of course, sings like an angel. The ageless Gene Kelly charms and dances with his usual aplomb. Michael Beck looks great in jeans and white socks, otherwise the less said the better. The wonderful Jeff Lynne/John Farrar score perfectly encapsulates the sound of the time, and the voice of Zeus is provided by the great Wilfred Hyde-White. A full eight course meal of sugar confections. No more than that, but no less than that either. You might wanna get out your roller skates........

David Fowler

Magnificent camp! An excellent remake of the far less entertaining 1946 Rita Hayworth musical "Down To Earth". Olivia is utterly without hope of Hayworth's charisma. She is however sweet and genuine and truly entertaining. She's no great dancer, but she, of course, sings like an angel. The ageless Gene Kelly charms and dances with his usual aplomb. Michael Beck looks great in jeans and white socks, otherwise the less said the better. The wonderful Jeff Lynne/John Farrar score perfectly encapsulates the sound of the time, and the voice of Zeus is provided by the great Wilfred Hyde-White. A full eight course meal of sugar confections. No more than that, but no less than that either. You might wanna get out your roller skates........

Frank R.

America's #1 "guilty pleasure" shows no sign of going away any time soon. Let the haters scoff while those who like their cheese piled high bask in the glow of this psychedelic neon dream. It is no accident that "Magic" topped the charts for four glorious weeks in 1980, for Olivia's longtime collaborator John Farrar was the same man behind the catchy "You're the One That I Want" from her previous film. Let us not dwell on the negatives either. (A miscast Michael Beck when a hunky David Naughton or Rex Smith might have provided--oh, I don't know--chemistry?) Enjoy the dance between Olivia and Gene Kelley (what would be his last) and then for laughs watch him put on a little fashion show with outfits ranging from "pimp" to "hairdresser." (Or was that the same outfit?) If you're still not sold on the idea, stick around for the must-be-seen--to-be-believed finale (not to mention the cult fan favorite: the number combining "big band" and "new wave" on one stage), and then see how this film was meant to pick up where "Rocky Horror" left off!

Frank R.

America's #1 "guilty pleasure" shows no sign of going away any time soon. Let the haters scoff while those who like their cheese piled high bask in the glow of this psychedelic neon dream. It is no accident that "Magic" topped the charts for four glorious weeks in 1980, for Olivia's longtime collaborator John Farrar was the same man behind the catchy "You're the One That I Want" from her previous film. Let us not dwell on the negatives either. (A miscast Michael Beck when a hunky David Naughton or Rex Smith might have provided--oh, I don't know--chemistry?) Enjoy the dance between Olivia and Gene Kelley (what would be his last) and then for laughs watch him put on a little fashion show with outfits ranging from "pimp" to "hairdresser." (Or was that the same outfit?) If you're still not sold on the idea, stick around for the must-be-seen--to-be-believed finale (not to mention the cult fan favorite: the number combining "big band" and "new wave" on one stage), and then see how this film was meant to pick up where "Rocky Horror" left off!