Thursday, January 11, 2018

I'm getting old

Because of his birthday on Monday, I've been thinking about Elvis a lot this week. I watched King Creole and Elvis and Nixon. And Grease.

I don't really like this movie very much. It's so synthetic. The cast is entirely too old (example: Stockard Channing was 34 when she played the 18-year-old Rizzo). It lacks the grit and sincerity of the original Broadway production. Yet it remains ridiculously popular. My friend Kathy tells me how both her daughter and granddaughters watch it over and over and over and know all the lyrics.

Watched through that prism, as family entertainment (something the play was never intended to be), I really didn't enjoy Grease. It glamorizes smoking and drinking and unprotected sex, without showing any of the consequences. And then there's "Greased Lightning," the number where Travolta channels his inner Elvis. He's got the hair and the hips but here he's something Elvis never was: vulgar.

The thought of generations of little girls hearing these lyrics and thinking it's OK for boys to sing/feel this way makes me very uncomfortable:

"You know that ain't no shit/we'll be getting lots of tit in Greased Lightning ..."
"You are supreme/the chicks will cream for Greased Lightning ..."
"You know I ain't bragging/she's a real pussy wagon, Greased Lightning ..."

Oh, well. Maybe I'm just one of those old-school, humorless, unreconstituted 70s-era feminists.

1 comment:

  1. I was in middle school when the movie came out and truthfully, I didn't get all the sexual innuendo/raunchiness--I liked the bubbly, upbeat songs. Now, I'm mortified by the film.


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