In case you missed it last week, MTV and Miramax Films teamed up on a premiere special for the new movie "54," a drama set in the infamous late-'70s New York nightclub of the same name.
Among the lowlights from this two-hour "infomercial" were interviews with the film's stars and other celebrities, who revealed what their favorite disco songs were.For example, Drew Barrymore disclosed to the vacuous MTV hosts that she enjoys Gloria Gaynor's "Never Gonna Say Goodbye" because she likes "the words `clams on the half-shell' and `rollerskate,' " while Jon Stewart is fond of "Green Grass and High Tides Forever," by the Outlaws "because it isn't disco." Forgive me for saying so, but who really cares?
However, in keeping with the spirit of the current disco revival and following in the footsteps of "American Top 40" host Casey Kasem, I'm making some long-distance dedications of disco-era songs and sending them out to some other movie stars and celebrities:
- To former Spice Girl Geri Halliwell (aka, Ginger Spice) from her former bandmates: "Don't Leave Me This Way," by Thelma Houston.
- To Michael Flatley, who rather unwisely retired from performing in "Lord of the Dance" to try his hand at film acting: "You Should Be Dancing," by the Bee Gees.
- To the squabbling, musical Jacksons (Michael, Janet, LaToya, et al): "We Are Family," by Sister Sledge.
- To the erroneously rumored-to-be-dead Bob Hope: either "Stayin' Alive," by the Bee Gees, "Born to be Alive," by Patrick Hernandez, or "I Will Survive," by Gloria Gaynor.
- To egomaniacal "Titanic" director James Cameron: "Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now," by Mcfadden & Whitehead. To those theaters still showing his movie, even though it was recently released on home video: "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough," by Michael Jackson.
- To "reformed" actresses Courtney Love and Drew Barrymore: "Bad Girls," by Donna Summer. (You're not fooling anyone.)
And finally, to the soon-to-be-divorced Bruce Willis and Demi Moore: "Love Will Keep Us Together," by the Captain & Tennille. (Hey, it's not really a disco song, but it certainly fits.)
So As Casey used to say, keep your feet on the ground and keep on reaching for the stars.
- I WANT MY MUMMY: As if you needed any further proof that Hollywood is bereft of original ideas - remember the recent slate of eerily similar disaster movies? - consider this tidbit: There are five different mummy movies either in production or awaiting film or video distribution.
And unfortunately, none of these is likely to revive (excuse the pun) the subject matter. "The Mummy," an upcoming thriller starring Brendan Fraser as a French Foreign Legionnaire who accidentally frees the murderous title character, is directed by Stephen Sommers, the man who brought us the gory sea-monster thriller "Deep Rising."
A different film bearing the same title, "The Mummy," is a remake of the 1932 horror film that starred Boris Karloff, this time with Alison Elliott and Christopher Walken. At least the filmmaker attached (Michael Almereyda, who made the oddly arty vampire flick "Nadja") is more creative.
Meanwhile, both "Legend of the Mummy," an adaptation of Bram Stoker's novel "The Jewel of the Seven Stars," and "Talos the Mummy," with Jason Scott Lee, Lysette Anthony and Christopher Lee, look like they're going straight to video (which is probably a good thing, considering the directors involved, schlockmeisters Russell Mulcahy and Jeffrey Obrow, respectively).
But what sounds like the worst of the bunch is "All New Adventures of Laurel & Hardy: For Love or Mummy," with alleged comedians Bronson Pinchot playing Stan and Gailard Sartain co-starring as Ollie. The responsible party for this extremely unpromisingcomedy is producer-director Larry Harmon, better known as TV's Bozo the Clown.
Kind of sounds like one movie where you might be rooting for the villain to come out on top, doesn't it?
- QUOTE OF THE WEEK: "I like suspense movies because they're visual, and I think you see very few directors working visually today. I do tend to focus on the visual image more than the story in many films. It's a big, white canvas up there - what are you filling it with? Closeups of people talking? I hope not." - Director Brian De Palma, known for being a style-over-substance filmmaker.