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Excellent 1980 TV Special
Having taped all of Olivia's Specials on Beta tape during their original broadcasts I have to say this is my all time favorite of hers., The songs are great and the guests first rate. Songs from Elton John, and Cliff Richard (who was not well known in the US at the time this special was produced in February 1980 for broadcast the following month). Cliff and Olivia showcase the song Suddenly which was from Olivia's upcoming film XANADU which started shooting in September of 1979 and continued to January 1980. Karen Carpenter makes a cameo in the special and did so at Olivia's request. Karen looked great and it is sad she died about three years later. Olivia's future husband Matt is seen as a dancer in the opening number. Having transferred this to DVD from beta the quality is stunning. Wish Olivia (who owns the rights to all her specials) would issue a box set of her special- including those she made for the UK (Which I also have on beta and DVD, but would like factory produced copies of!) Excellent Special!
Goldie and Liza Together (1980)
I Have This Show
I taped this on VHS many years ago, but missed the first two seconds. This is an excellent show. I love the recording studio skit where Goldie does not know how to act during a recording session and causes many retakes with Liza. The thing is Goldie released a solo LP titled "Goldie" in 1972 and is a very good singer. It would be nice to have this on a studio released DVD (other than the copy I made for myself on DVD!) The music and the costumes as well as the production values make this an excellent quality program. I believe this was aired originally in early 1980. I recall watching it and thinking it should win an Emmy for best variety special. All in all a very well done, thought out program!
Smokey Bites the Dust (1981)
This film has to be one of the worst produced in 1981. Actor Jimmy McNichol plays Roscoe, a teenage admirer of Peggy Sue. He playfully kidnaps her (is that even possible?) and many car chases ensue. Peggy's father is the local foul-mouth Sheriff who promises to get even with Roscoe. While Jimmy's sister Kristy was making the much better film "The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia" in 1981, Jimmy was making this worthless mess. The acting here leaves much to be desired. None of the characters ever fully develop. The sound effects are for children. There are minutes worth of slow motion wrecks, fast motion car chases and endless drivel here. If that is your thing, this film is for you. I would rather spend my money on quality videos. This one is going into my yard sale pile for $.50!
Good special, but...
This Olivia special was aired for the first time in the summer of 1978 to tie in with the release of Grease. This special though is flawed by the use of annoying children who "act" out scenes in the program. They really grate on your nerves imitating Olivia and her guests. It looks as though the scenes with the children alone were not well rehearsed and taped after the shows main parts were finished. Olivia looks fabulous (as always) and sings a lot of her hits on the program. Her guests, ABBA and Andy Gibb, also sing their big hits. Having this on laser disc I am happy to say you can skip past the annoying children. I hope this is issued on DVD along with Olivia's fantastic 1977 special titled "Just Olivia."
This has to be one of the worst "acted" films I have ever seen. The scenery is beautiful and the abandoned hotel spooky, but most of the cast leaves a lot to be desired in terms of acting ability. The female lead "Jenny" at one point screams about finding a gun. "Marty, I found a gun in the closet!" That is where this film should be sent to and never seen again. The crazy woman in the film whispers most of her lines and that tends to get on my nerves. The one good thing is the handsome bearded actor who plays a lunatic and chases Jenny around. The actress and I use that term lightly who plays Jenny should think about taking a refresher course in acting. Bad, bad, bad! F-