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Grease...Slips Through The Cracks!!
on August 16, 2002
GREASE is the word? I don't think so! One of the most overrated (yet profitable) movie musicals ever made. The plot and script are thin, the direction is VERY bad, the characters look way too old for their parts (high schoolers?), and while some of the musical numbers and songs are memorable (SUMMER NIGHTS & GREASE LIGHTNING), they too are terribly directed. Notice the singing of the characters in the film are all out of synch when anyone is performing. John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John play the leads of two love struck high schoolers (Danny and Sandy) who have previously met at the beach during summer vacation. They fall in love, but when summer ends they part ways thinking they'll meet intermittantly because Sandy is vacationing from Austraila. However, when school begins, she unexpectedly stays in the states and begins school where Danny goes. When they meet again Danny can't show his true feelings to her. Also, he takes on his alter ego, opposite of the romantic beach boy, because he is part of a greaser gang (The T-Birds). It wouldn't be "Cool" to be love with a "Sandra Dee" type... that is, a girl who doesn't "put out". (The guys think they are a bunch of toughs, but in reality are a bunch of wimps in disguise i.e. Micheal Tucci as Sonny.) Then there is the Pink Ladies, the mirrored opposite sex equivalent of the "T-Birds" who are equally puzzling because you have two cool chicks (Stockard Channing as Rizzo and Dinah Manoff as Marty) and the rest seemingly act like Sandy (most notable.. Didi Conn as Frenchie). The rest of the story deals with Danny trying to win back Sandy when he realises he wants to be with her despite of what the other greasers think and still maintain his tough greaser image. So, he tries out for different sports to be a jock to impress her etc...Also, here are minor subplots such as the T-Birds competing against another gang (or car club). The film scores only because of the supporting cast and cameos with the likes of the late Eve Arden as Principal McGee, Sid Ceasar as Coach Calhoun, Alice Ghostly, Frankie Avalon, Sha Na Na, Ed Byrnes, and the late Joan Blondell. Movie gets worse with each subsequent screenings because the main characters are all mean spirited and annoying (especially Jeff Conaway as Kenickie). Note: look for Michael Biehn (TERMINATOR, TOMBSTONE) as one of Lorenzo Lamas' (Tom the Jock) athletic buddies.