This is my first ever contribution to the White Elephant Blogathon. If that statement has you wondering about the genius behind a blogathon that involves the discovery of such err rare finds as this one, you can read more here.
So, I presume anyone reading this has either watched Grease or at least heard of it, yeah? That movie with John Travolta being all young and hot (okay, maybe not as hot as he is in Saturday Night Fever but still…) and Olivia Newton-John being all sweet and sexy at the same time? And featuring all those fun and energetic albeit overplayed songs?
Yeah, this is not that movie and shares none of those traits with it’s prequel. What we have here instead is a rather sad, uninspired, insipid sequel that isn’t even fun in a campy, so-bad-its-good kinda way. Anyway, so what do we have here?
The movie pretty much randomly throws you back at Rydell High with not much info on what has transpired since we last left said institution. Anyway, a new school year obviously means students come in all singing and dancing.
It’s probably also a good time to introduce the new version of the T-Birds (the supposedly cool guys although one would be hard-pressed having to guess that from this picture) and the Pink Ladies.
What better way to begin a love story musical than with a breakup? This is where Stephanie (played by none other than 3 times Oscar Nominee Michelle Pfeiffer) breaks up with her T-bird boyfriend because she wants her freedom. Turns out she just wanted to trade him in for someone with better hair. Wait a minute, I take that back. He has pretty great hair. She just prefers blondes.
Entering the mix, we have our hero, an exchange student from Australia, with a rather unfortunate penchant for printed sweaters, a fashion choice that wins him no favors with our onlyleatherjacketsneedapply heroine.
Anyway, a few mostly uninteresting classroom shenanigans later, we come to the event that will hopefully finally propel this movie forward. Yes, the announcement of the inevitable dance competition! (Hafta love the guy admiring his own mug).
Anyway, I guess I forgot to mention that Sweater Boy has by this point fallen head over heels in love with Stephanie and learnt that she only dates men with motorcycles. Something she informs him via song obviously:
“I want a devil in skin tight leather,
And he’s gonna be wild as the wind,….
And one fine night, I’ll be holding’ on tight… ”
“He can burn me through and through.
So Sweater Boy sets about trying to raise enough dough to buy a motorcycle and supplemental accoutrements. Lucky for him, he is also a genius who is promptly hired by the T-birds to write them essays on topics ranging from the fall of Rome to William the Conqueror. And surely anyone who’s ever taught or taken a class knows that ghost written history assignments are always submitted in impeccable calligraphy (Wut?).
Anyway, several assignments and back room deals later, Sweater Boy has turned into the Coooooll Riider in a scene that made me wish I was watching Zac Efron in 17 Again instead.
So Stephanie has random encounters with mysterious Coooool Riiider guy and has no clue he’s also Sweater Guy. Not much else happens till one of these encounters just preceding the school dance where the T-Birds take on Cool Rider and Cool Rider vanishes into an abyss with his motorcycle and they all presume he’s dead. Stephanie sobs a little but then recovers rather quickly when she realizes they’re all late for the dance competition.
Several dance sequences later, it’s Stephanie’s turn and she freezes on stage after realizing she just chose to attend this dance instead of trying to find out whether or not the guy she’s in love with is dead! Under the circumstances, she does what any normal person in this movie would do – sings a solipsistic song about the unfairness of it all.
In what I consider one of the movie’s finest moments, the whole things takes on a weird turn where the song blurs the lines between the movie’s reality and Stephanie’s fantasy and turns the whole thing into a smoke-filled duet between our two young lovers.
Probably would’ve been best if it all ended there. Unfortunately for us, this a movie where the makers didn’t let a single song or dance idea go to waste. So we have instead a rather bizarre and surreal (not in a good way) luau sequence that culminates in a rather prolonged and uncomfortable chemistry-free kiss.
Can’t end this post without some gratuitous screenshots of Michelle Pfeiffer performing.
Conclusion: This is just a terrible movie. Not only is it utterly devoid of any charm and feature some of the most heinous music ever, it’s also needlessly mean to women, short people, old people, nerds and men that wear pink jackets.
[Many Thanks to Paul Clark for hosting this blogathon and for letting me participate. As for whoever submitted this, I hope your face gets frozen in that eternal pout Pfeiffer wears throughout this movie.]