THE STORY: John Travolta solidified his position as the most versatile and magnetic screen presence of the decade in this film version of the smash hit play Grease. Recording star Olivia Newton-John made her American film debut as Sandy, Travolta’s naive love interest. The impressive supporting cast reads like a “who’s who” in this quintessential musical about the fabulous ’50s. Grease is not just a nostalgic look at a simpler decade–it’s an energetic and exciting musical homage to the age of rock ‘n’ roll!
THE REVIEW: Paramount offers up Grease Rockin’ Rydell Edition to celebrate the 30th anniversary and to cash in on the classic. Grease has a huge and loyal following that is always willing to spend money in order to get the latest Grease releases and finally there is a reason to celebrate. The Rockin’ Rydell Edition brings Grease to the small screen at its best. The images are fantastically sharp and it’s surprising how a thirty-year old movie can look so good from a digital makeover.
The cast of John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John are only a small part of a stellar ensemble. The characters are fantastic and all have something to offer the movie. It’s interesting to see the interaction of the guys and girls and the relationships. Sure, a guy like me finds the singing a bit corny but it’s not so over the top that it makes it impossible to enjoy. It’s interesting to think how provocative Grease was thirty-years ago as it seems mighty innocuous now—particularly the girls in the tight outfits and the guys spewing innuendo.
Grease is the type of movie that crosses all boundaries and stands the test of time. Honestly, I’m not a fan of musicals. My wife was excited to see the DVD and after fighting it I was surprised how entertaining Grease ended up being. I haven’t seen the movie in over twenty-years and hated it then. Grease is the kind of movie that a regular guy doesn’t want to admit enjoying.
THE EXTRAS: The DVD comes in a leather jacket—which is surprisingly nice. It was a really cool surprise to open the package and find the DVD surrounded by the T-Birds leather jacket.
The commentary by Director Randal Kleiser and choreographer Patricia Birch is mostly a generic look at the production and some information on the choreography. There is also an introduction by Randal Kleiser. There is the usual feature of Deleted/Extended/Alternate Scenes with introduction by Randal Kleiser. There is also a Grease DVD Premiere Party in 2002. There are also Grease memories From John and Olivia. Also included are vintage interviews with John Travolta, Allan Carr Vintage, Olivia Newton-John, and Robert Stigwood.
“The Time, The Place, The Motion: Remembering Grease” – This is a featurette that was originally included with the 1998 and 2002 releases and the 2006 version comes with a few new interviews.
“The Moves” – A behind the scenes look at the choreography and choreographer Patricia Birch. This is a very simple look into the creation of the dance sequences.
“Thunder Roadsters “ – This is all about the cars and the fascination with vintage cars.
There is also a Rydell Rock Along with an all-new Karaoke track, Theatrical Trailer, and Photo Gallery.
FRANKLY: The Grease Rockin’ Rydell Edition is surprisingly clear and colorful. There is no doubt that this is the best looking Grease release to date. If you don’t own the classic on DVD then the Rockin’ Rydell Edition is the one to own.
+ Charlie Craine