Written by: Allan Carr & Bronte Woodard, based on the musical by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey
Directed by: Randal Kleiser
Starring: John Travolta, Olivia Newton-John, Stockard Channing, Jeff Conoway, Michael Tucci, Barry Pearl, Kelly Ward, Didi Conn, Frankie Avalon, and Sid Caesar
- Special Interviews with Cast and Crew
- Original Theatrical Trailer
Released by: Paramount
My Advice: Own it, but be ready to sell it when there’s a better DVD release
Danny Zuko (Travolta) and Sandy Olsen (Newton-John) have just had a fantastical summer at the beach with one another. It was love at first sight, but alas they must part to go back to the Real World. What they don’t know is that she will be attending Rydell High this year, which just happens to be the same school that Danny attends. When their paths finally cross at Rydell, he’s just not the same Danny that was at the beach with her. See, she’s every bit the preppy that she was that summer, but he is the exact opposite. Will the love of the past summer survive this school year?
[ad#longpost]It’s just a shame they don’t make movies like this anymore. It is truly the last of the big Hollywood musicals and as such, it’s a piece of American movie history. Just watching it makes anyone long for the glory days of high school (and for a simpler time in American History). Travolta simply was Danny Zuko. He was obviously drawing from his experience in the Broadway production, but, hey, whatever makes it happen, right? It was Olivia Newton-John’s first feature film, even though she had been a music star for several years before this movie, but she, too, was perfect as Sandy. In short, every character and every relationship was perfect; this helps to explain why this film has become the classic that it is.
Which is also what makes it a shame that it isn’t given a better DVD treatment from Paramount. Basically, all you get is a special interview segment with some of the cast and crew. Don’t get me wrong, it’s better than nothing, but it’s just not good enough for a nearly twenty-five-year-old movie that’s a veritable classic. The original trailer is a great addition to the DVD, it’s just a shame there aren’t more nostalgic features like this. For the younger generations who might be discovering this film for the first time, it’s great that there is a songbook enclosed with this package, but for those of us who grew up with this film, it really doesn’t matter that it’s there at all…don’t most of us know already know the lyrics to “Beauty School Drop-out?”
This film itself should be in your collection, but don’t get too attached to it. The movie’s 25th Anniversary is next year, so I would hope that we should expect a better DVD release commemorating this occasion.
- Since this review was posted originally, this edition of the DVD has gone out of print. This is the more recent version with more stuff on it.
- Click here to buy the Blu-Ray version from Amazon.
- Click here to buy the soundtrack from Amazon.