5.1/10
10,278
289 user 43 critic

Xanadu (1980)

Trailer
1:57 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
A struggling artist living in Los Angeles meets a girl who may hold the key to his happiness.

Director:

Reviews
Popularity
4,054 ( 1,092)
1 win & 9 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Two of a Kind (1983)
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

God has had just about enough of the human's attitude so he will destroy the planet very soon. It is up to a struggling inventor and a bank teller, both with very amateur criminal minds, to... See full summary »

Director: John Herzfeld
Stars: John Travolta, Olivia Newton-John, Charles Durning
Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.5/10 X  
Stars: Delta Goodrem, Kate Jenkinson, Paul David-Goddard
Xanadu (2013)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

Feature length comedy about Richard Butler, a reclusive writer who becomes trapped inside his own novel. Surrounded by characters from his best selling pulp books Richard undergoes a ... See full summary »

Director: Dominic Reynolds
Stars: Kenny Blyth, Jonathan Fegan, Mary Gapinski
Grease (1978)
Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Good girl Sandy and greaser Danny fell in love over the summer. When they unexpectedly discover they're now in the same high school, will they be able to rekindle their romance?

Director: Randal Kleiser
Stars: John Travolta, Olivia Newton-John, Stockard Channing
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Kira
... Danny McGuire
... Sonny Malone
... Simpson
... Helen
Katie Hanley ... Sandra
Fred McCarren ... Richie
... Jo (as Ren Woods)
... Muse 1
Lynn Latham ... Muse 2
Melinda Phelps ... Muse 3
Cherise Bates ... Muse 4 (as Cherise Bate)
Juliette Marshall ... Muse 5
Marilyn Tokuda ... Muse 6
Yvette Van Voorhees ... Muse 7
Edit

Storyline

In Los Angeles, artist Sonny Malone reluctantly returns to his job at Airflow Records - his job to do poster-sized exact renderings of album covers for on-site promotions, the renderings to be as close to the originals as possible - as he could not make a living as a freelance artist, where he could truly use his artistic vision. On his first day back at Airflow, he gets sidetracked by the thoughts of a young woman who literally roller skates into him. What he is unaware of is that their initial encounter and subsequent encounters are not by accident as she, Kira, a muse, was awakened by his lamentations about his art, she sent to help him achieve his artistic vision. This day, Sonny also meets aging Danny McGuire, a former big band musician turned construction company owner, he who wants to return to his roots by owning a live music venue. Danny initially and Sonny also do not know that their meeting is not by accident as Sonny will soon discover that Kira was part of his past. Sonny... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In Xanadu a golden goddess did decree... Welcome to your own musical fantasy. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 August 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Xanadú  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,471,595, 10 August 1980, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$22,762,571
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(London premiere Print)|

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the DVD Special Features, the film was originally conceived as a low-budget roller disco movie. See more »

Goofs

When Sonny enters Airflo records, he goes over to hang his coat up. He then begins to push an easel across the room. It wasn't beside the coat rack in the previous shot. See more »

Quotes

Kira: Our first date together.
Sonny: Followed by our first getting-kicked-out together.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opens with the 1930s-era Universal logo, with an airplane circling a globe; then it becomes a 50s-era passenger plane, then the Concorde, then the fourth time around as it becomes a spaceship. Instrumentals of "Whenever You're Away From Me" and "Xanadu" play under this, with musical styles matching the period of each aircraft. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Criminal Minds: Exit Wounds (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Magic
Performed by Olivia Newton-John
Words and Music by John Farrar
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
I hope you like your musicals extra-cheesy
26 April 2005 | by See all my reviews

Xanadu, which has received some scathing one-sentence reviews, flopped in a big way at the box office, and even helped inspire the creation of the Razzies, is underrated. Not as underrated as that statement would normally imply, but enough. The reason why it is underrated is similar to the reason why it stinks. Xanadu consists of two parts, each of which can be divided into two parts depending on how successful each scene making up those two parts are.

The first part is all dialogue, in which Michael Beck, Gene Kelly, Olivia Newton-John, or combinations thereof, spend a lot of screen time talking about the importance of following one's dreams. The success of this part of the film depends largely on how tightly integrated it is with the musical part. When the male leads discuss music in particular, it starts to fall flat as the artistic sentiment of a bygone era tries unsuccessfully to gel with the lowest-common-denominator mentality of what was then the present. The music sequences that fit in with this rule tend to suffer a lot, too. The attempt to blend a 1940s jazz band with Electric Light Orchestra, who were never really that representative of any culture, even those of the 1980s, is especially embarrassing. It dates the whole film beyond return.

On the other hand, when the musical and dialogue sequences are not connected to one another, they work so well. Michael Beck's dialogues with the supporting cast about how his dreams of artistic freedom failed are brilliantly executed. The dialogue between Beck and Kelly in which the latter basically tells the former that quitting now will leave him with a lifetime of regret is pure gold. The conversation in which Beck's and Newton-John's characters argue with the voices of the gods, performed by Wilfrid Hyde-White and Coral Browne, works wonderfully in spite of the ludicrous costume on Beck. But the real gem in this flick is the climactic rollerdisco scene. I don't know how long it took them to coordinate and stage this myriad of sequences, but the result was worth every bit of effort.

Unfortunately, the film is not without its problems. Many sequences are either boring or outright ludicrous. The animated part in particular fails to fit in with the rest of the film. Major rewrites began close to production as the producers tried to distinguish the production from other rollerskating-themed films of the time. According to Olivia Newton-John, the film was literally being written as it was shot, and nowhere does this show more than in the final musical sequences of the aforementioned rollerdisco scene. It was as if the makers decided to put in as many shots of Olivia singing and dancing in as many costumes as they could. Perhaps the problem was in the editing, as the aforementioned on-the-spot writing would have caused a problem with knowing exactly when to call it over. Truth be told, it does stretch a little past its welcome, if only by a few minutes. But then, show me a film that is not guilty of the same offense, and I will show you a masterpiece.

Truth be told, this film is nowhere near as bad as the IMDb rating would have you believe. It is not all that good, either, but it gets a little bit more right than wrong. Compared to excruciatingly bad musicals that take themselves far too seriously, such as the recent Chicago adaptation, this is pure gold. Hence, in spite of a lot of problems, I rated Xanadu a seven out of ten. It is a real guilty pleasure of a film, and really needed more time in pre-production, but it is entertaining for more than half of its running time, which is more than I can say for a lot of other films. Especially of this genre.


26 of 29 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 289 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Sci-Fi Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular sci-fi movies and TV shows available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial