20-26 October 2008

October 27 2008 at 10:02 pm (The list)

From the boxing ring to the dance floor, I went back to the 70s (figuratively speaking) this week to cross off a couple of long-overdue classics.


Rocky (1976)

‘Boxing,’ said Kryten to Lister in an episode of Red Dwarf. ‘Do you like boxing?’ His answer was ‘There’s nothing wrong with boxing.’ I used to disagree but I’m starting to think differently. Having never been very interested in sport, I’ve tended to shy away from sports movies in the past. What I didn’t realise was that many great sports movies just use sport as a backdrop. So it is with Rocky – it’s more about determination, love and proving yourself than boxing. Stallone’s confident script is delivered with passionate performances and the wintry Philadelphia setting lends a gritty reality to the film. It starts off a little slow but, like its hero, it goes the distance (sorry) and delivers a (ahem) knock out finale.


Rating: 4/5


Saturday Night Fever (1978)

‘Where do you go when the record is over…’ read the rather portentous tagline for this 1970s dance fest. For those who’ve never seen it and don’t know much about the film, hearing the soundtrack (famously the best-selling of all time) is enough. It’s hard to take this gritty drama about inner city alienation seriously, because of all that silly falsetto singing and ludicrous dancing which don’t make up for the rambling story. Not a lot happens throughout, although this successfully mirrors the desperation felt by Travolta’s ice-cool Tony Manero. Although more famous than good, Saturday Night Fever is undoubtedly influential and it made a star out of John Travolta.


Rating: 3/5


Shame list total: 1,249


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