We had dinner tonight at a diner up the street from my home. They have old 45's (think compact disk before compact disk) hanging on the wall. One of them was for Electric Light Orchestra's All Over the World. And in one moment I was a teenager again.In 1980, I was 13 (again, please don't do the math) and I was a wanna be writer with a huge imagination and a teenager's thirst for the romantics and a quest for identity. Along came the movie Xanadu, featuring the beautiful Olivia Newton John (shortly after her fame with Grease) and the movie highlighted all the things that my 13 year old self loved.It was the 80's and there were an awful lot of us roller skating. Even my mom took up roller skating. There was great music, lots of fun and cool guys who knew how to do all the fancy tricks. (But I digress). I was never an expert at skating, but I could go forward and backward and earned myself quite a few blisters. I never looked as cool as Olivia did in those long flowy dresses, but chances were quite good that if I'd worn them I'd have ended up on the floor with the skirt up around my neck. I did however have a couple of pairs of nifty leg warmers in rainbow colors that I used to wear. That was the year that the movie Xanadu was released. For those of you who have never seen it, I can assure you that it can still be found. It can actually be downloaded or rented from iTunes. And in case you haven't seen it, then this is a spoiler alert

*******Don't read more if you don't want to know the storyline***********

The movie starts when a record album artist, Sonny, played by the dreamy Micheal Beck, is asked to paint a cover and finds that the girl in the picture is the same one who kissed him earlier and then skated away on the boardwalk. He knows that somehow he has to find her and he traces the picture to an old art deco auditorium (the Pan American building?). There he meets Danny, played by none other than Gene Kelly as an aspiring night club owner. Now, for anyone out there saying Gene who? Shame on you! I'd been half in love with him since the first time I saw Singing in the Rain. No one could dance like he could and make it look so effortless. (Except maybe for Danny Kaye). Together, they decide to open the nightclub of their dreams. Then along come Olivia's character, Kira. She's beautiful and soul awakening. But Olivia's character, Kira had a secret. She was a daughter of Zeus and one of the legendary Muses. She has come to earth to inspire until the time she recalled. But she falls in love with Sonny, Beck's character. Her parents are angered, but it's her impassioned plea that convinces them to let her stay with him for a moment or forever. Unfortunately, their idea of time is not the same as ours and they recall Kira. Sonny is depressed and convinced that his dreams are nothing with Kira. Opening night and the place is packed. Everyone loves it and Sonny is still upset about Kira. But he is surprised when she suddenly reappears. And... sigh... all is well in the end. All the songs were dreamy and romantic and I played them so much that they began to skip. Somewhere I may still have my copy of All Around the World. And if ELO is still out there... Thank you. So, what does this have to do with a 13 year old girl who wanted to be a writer? O-So-Much! That story had all the things that I dreamed of and inspired me to put my pen to paper and start me on my path. It wasn't the only inspiration, but it was a strong one. Many would say that the movie was nothing more than sappy fairy tale on roller skates... And I say... We all need a good sappy fairy tale on roller skates at some point in our lives. I may even go dig out a pair of skates!

1 comment:

zhadi said...

I watched that movie for Gene Kelly alone...It was silly as hell, but such fun! And I suspect seeing it at age 13 rather than age 18 (don't do the math!) would allow a bit more suspension of disbelief and cynacism!

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