Grease, A Rare Film
The Film “ Grease “ at one time was the third highest grossing film of all time behind only “ Jaws” and “ Star Wars(2).” It still ranks today as the top grossing musical of all time. What really makes the movie historically important in film history is it achieved such status at time when both Hollywood and the movie going public where no longer interested in musical genre. Released in 1978 Grease went on to top all movies at the box office that year. Topping movies like “Superman”, “Animal House” “ Midnight Express “ and the critically acclaimed and best picture winner “ The Deer Hunter(3).” The film demonstrated that with the right cast and proper score the musical can still be profitable to Hollywood and entertaining to the public.
The movie is set in the late 50’s at fictional Rydell High. A very large contrast from the direction films of the seventies were beginning to take. The decade produced some hugely successful films, but all of genre far from a romantic musical comedy. Films that were considered disasters, not in production or quality but in story line. “Airport,” “The Poseidon Adventure” and “Towering Inferno” to name the best of the worst. There were also four James Bond movies three Planet of the Apes, two Jaws pictures and one Star Wars(3). So the film really does not reflect the mood of the times. It stands alone, unique not only in genre and setting but in content as well. The film will hopefully continue to influence some studios to take a chance on some projects that are a little off the present path.
Randal Kleiser the director was simply trying to create a movie version of the gigantically successful stage production that had dominated Broadway for years. Eventually setting a record with 3338 performances. Although many critics panned the movie when it opened in June of 1978 the public went wild. The movies’ plot parallels the time in which the movie is set. The coming of age and innocence of high school in the...