Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Village People - Can't Stop the Music|
Actors: Alex Briley, David Hodo, Glenn Hughes, Randy Jones, Felipe Rose
Director: Nancy Walker
Genres: Drama, Cult Movies, Musicals & Performing Arts
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Separates the men from the boys...
Todd J. Brandt | New York, NY United States | 05/08/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"...Trust me, my jaw has not dropped in a long time (and that's not a VP-style double entendre), but nearly EVERY scene was jaw-droppingly, eye-poppingly, mind-bogglingly terrible.You know what you're in for when the main titles consist of Steve Guttenberg roller-skating through Manhattan, obstensibly "listening" and skate-dancing to the song played over the titles--however, Guttenberg instead seems to be dancing to the voices in his own head, so out of sync is he with the music.Things get even loonier when we're asked to believe that buxom Valerie Perrine was "the face of the 70's," as in that decade's top fashion model. For WHOM? Frederick's of Hollywood? Lauren Hutton she ain't. Throw in Bruce Jenner (!!!) as the--ahem--straight man, camp icons Tammy Grimes and June Havoc, Marilyn Sokol as the very poor man's Eve Arden, and the Village People passing as hetero, and you've got one seriously twisted movie.Let's just rundown the highlights:1) Bruce Jenner (PLAYING A STRAIGHT MAN, I must reiterate), running around New York City in Daisy Dukes and a bare midriff, shrunken tee shirt.2) A group of little boys in full VP drag, including the Leatherman's get-up. (It's for a milk commercial. Don't ask.)3) David Hodo's (the Construction Worker) big solo number, "I Love You to Death," which, to be fair, seems to have been conceived as an intentionally comic parody. (However, the same could be said of the entire film.) At any rate, David can't sing, but he's really hot jumping around in his skintight jeans, while being clawed at by overly-made-up mannequins in Halston knock-offs.4) The "YMCA" production number, which is a hysterically inept homage to "Million Dollar Mermaid" and "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes"--but you do get to see a lot of bare, buffed skin.5) The finale ultimo, with the VP is sequined versions of their uniform drag--prior to going onstage, they're visited by "special guest star Leigh Taylor-Young."Needless to say, one must proceed with caution when deciding to buy/watch this trash masterpiece. But for those hardy souls, there is NO other film in my recent memory on which SO much money was spent, with NO redeeming results whatsoever. Every scene is awful. All of the lead "actors" are rotten--Perrine and Guttenberg must have been sniffing coke between takes, because each one performs at a disturbingly manic pace.So why the four star review? Because it's irresistible in its own weird way--like a car crash, only vastly more entertaining. It's also a priceless time capsule of an era that was only 20-odd years ago, but seems like a lifetime away. Also, the DVD transfer is gorgeous--they must be BIG fans of this movie at the remastering studio."
PERFECT FOR BAD MOVIE NIGHT!
Claude Bouchard Jr. | 08/22/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Five stars for the simple fact that no other movie could purposely be so bad that it's good. Far from being an Oscar contender, this movie is one to consider if you're having a campy bad movie night. The film is a fictionalized view of how the Village People became a group. The plot is passable, the acting is horrid, but the music saves the whole thing. Steve Guttenberg in his very first role is terrible, Valerie Perrine (little bundle of talent that she is) makes you wonder how she survives as an actress, and Bruce Jenner (pre-op, so he's still gorgeous) should have stayed in athletics. One fantasy scene involving the construction worker is hilarious (like he dreams of women!), the YMCA sequence is so embarrassingly bad (think Esther Williams on a really low budget) that you'll laugh and cringe at the same time, in the disco sequence DJ Guttenberg mixes records that are completely out of tempo with each other, and watch out for the double-scoop ice cream cone that never melts and whose flavors switch positions at any given moment! Is this movie one of my all time favorites? You bet!"
WHY HASN'T CRITERION PICKED THIS UP? SO AWFUL IT'S GOOD!
Claude Bouchard Jr. | Frederick, MD | 08/13/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Considering that this movie has managed, as a result of its incredibly dismal box office record back in 1980, to end any ideas that Hollywood might have about future movie musicals, it's a mystery that Criterion hasn't picked this up for remastering and augmentation with countless extra features (both the director and the producer have since passed away, so the time is right...hello, Criterion! ). Besides, if they can release that awful sci-fi flick "Armageddon" on a double-DVD set, they can surely strike gold with this movie. What more can be said about this ill-timed disco musical fantasy/biography that hasn't already been mentioned? I remember paying to see this in a theater where I was the only soul in attendance! It was pretty bad then, and it's just as bad now, if not worse. The film retells the formation of the Village People. They star as themselves (before the big 1980/1981 personnel change, anyway) and are accompanied by Steve Guttenberg who's terrible, Valerie Perrine who's even worse, and Bruce Jenner before his face-feminizing plastic surgery. The storyline is pure fantasy (it IS a musical, isn't it?), and the acting is really bottom-of-the-barrel--it's no wonder I haven't seen any of these people ever do anything else--. Ahh, but there's the sweet disco music that more than makes up for the actors' shortcomings! That this movie was directed by Nancy Walker (of "Rhoda" fame) should tell you something. Some moments are so bad, you'll be screaming in disbelief. The scene in which the construction worker dreams of being attacked by beautiful women is hilarious (yeah, like we believe that one!). The YMCA scenes will cause your jaw to drop...the slow motion, the split screen, the mirrored images, and the Esther Williams-like pool plunge must be seen to be believed! The musical milk commercial that seems to go on forever. The baton-on-fire-twirling mustached man in tight gold lame shorts who proudly states, "James is my name, and flaming's my game!" (I kid you not!). And, as someone else mentioned, Valerie's non-melting double-scoop ice cream cone whose chocolate and vanilla flavors switch positions randomly and which can be easily waived about with no fear of falling to the ground. And it goes on and on...the fun never ends. Amazing! So, now that I've railed on and on about the movie, why did I give it 5 stars? For the simple reason that no movie could have purposely been done with the idea that it would end up this bad. Somebody somwhere definitely thought this was a commercially feasible movie. That alone deserves five stars. But the fact that you will be on the floor laughing your head off when you see this is enough. Buy this film, get lots of popcorn, invite some friends over, and get ready to have a truly unreal evening. Get this before it goes out-of-print."
An unstoppable piece of high camp
Claude Bouchard Jr. | 04/15/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"OK, fans, here it is at last. In pristine Panavision and 6.1 DTS stereo, the most jaw-droppingly campy movie musical in memory comes to DVD. If you've never seen this piece of work, you haven't any idea how howlingly bad it really is; if you know the film, you'll be happy to see it presented as originally shown. The highlights (or lowlights, depending upon how you view it) are endless: the tacky production design, the really bad script, the incredibly unsubtle acting, the virtually talentless Village People, the disco production numbers that look to have been assembled and shot so hastily that you find yourself thinking "did they have ANY idea of what they were doing?" Bruce Jenner, why? Valerie Perrine and Steve Guttenberg, why? Tammy Grimes and Baby June Havoc, oh why? The movie worms its way into your heart however, because it really is clueless. And it brashly goes straight ahead at full velocity in its awfulness. It's not "Lost Horizon" with that pseudo-hip score or the awful weight of immortality pushing it down; it's not "Mame" with an ancient Lucille Ball hitting notes in the key of K flat and conducting the chorus as if she were some sort of Pied Piper; and it's not "Xanadu" - it's closest kin - because Gene Kelly and Olivia Newton-John have actual musical talent. "Can't Stop the Music" exists in a rarified strata of its own - both spectacularly bad and unquenchably entertaining - and we're very glad to have it on DVD."