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Saturday Night Fever (1977)
John Travolta's Greatest Film!
"Saturday Night Fever" in my humble opinion has remained John Travolta's best film to date. It was his debut lead film role and it has remained an all time favorite of mine. Travolta plays a character named Tony Manero, who is a 19 year old paint store retailer in Brooklyn. Tony yearns for a better life and trys to figure out a way to break free from his dead end friends and parents. He knows he's capable of doing more with his life than he has. Tony is a remarkable dancer and he shows everyone this at the 2001 Odyssey Disco, every Saturday night. Then he meets Stephanie, a maturing young woman who is trying to improve her life with education and interest in her career. She also enjoys dancing, so Stephanie and Tony decide to become dance partners. The story follows the two becoming friends, falling in love and Tony's maturation. John Travolta couldn't be bettered in the role of Tony Manero. His character is outwardly cool and tough, but inside there is a lot of tenderness and caring. Travolta is an excellent dancer and he proves this as he glides onto the dance floor and gyrates to the Bee Gees pulsating soundtrack. The supporting cast is first rate too. This is definitely a 1970's classic that shouldn't be missed by any connoisseur of film.
Flash Gordon (1980)
A real guilty pleasure of mine!
"Flash Gordon" is a big budget science fiction fantasy that is completely enjoyable. I saw this movie when I was 11 years old, and I remember coming out of the theater and telling my parents how great it was. As an adult, I still find it a lot of fun. The movie is intentionally very campy and unrealistic. It is a homage to those 1930's serials that starred Buster Crabbe. It's not in the same league as "Star Wars", but it was not intended to be. "Flash Gordon" is less concerned with meticulous special effects and more concerned with characters in the story. I personally enjoyed that. Don't get me wrong though, there is plenty of action, colorful costumes, classic dialogue, and elaborate sets. The movie is well paced with no lulls in the story. Sam Jones as Flash is weak, but the rest of the cast is superb. There are two stand out performances. Max Von Sydow is a formidable Ming the Merciless and Ornella Muti is perfect as the alluring Princess Aura. Overall, a real treat if you want some fun entertainment.
Blow Out (1981)
One of John Travolta's best performances!
"Blow Out" is a 1981 thriller that certainly should have garnered more attention than it did. It is the story of a B-horror movie sound man who accidentally records a murder on his audio tapes, of a politician who was possibly a contender for the American presidency. The movie is dark, eerie and always keeps the audience on the edge. John Travolta gives one of the finest performances of his career. He is believable, sincere, and this film showed the world that Travolta could do a lot more than play a wise cracking teenager. Nancy Allen also deserves praise as the simple minded girl who also becomes entangled in this dangerous situation. As far as suspense thrillers go, this is top notch. See for yourself!