Tony Manero is a 19-year Old Italian from Brooklyn who lives at home with his parents. With his dad out of work, Tony contributes to the household with his crappy job at the hardware store. He is only concerned with a few things in life: women, clothes, hanging at the club and dancing. The club is called 2001 Odyssey where Tony is the weekly “king of the dance floor” and everyone, especially Annette, loves him. She is his “rejected admirer” who will not give up but she finally gets her chance when there is dance contest that Tony agrees to be her partner. She is quickly kicked aside when he sees a woman gliding across the dance floor with the skills to match his own named Stephanie Mangano. He has to have her as his partner so that he can win this contest with ease.
SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER is directed by John Badham. He has directed a few 80’s staples such as WARGAMES and SHORT CIRCUIT. With this film, he has taken somewhat of a cultural look at Brooklyn in the late 1970s and the nightlife for the kids in their early 20’s. Travolta plays Tony and has that arrogance of someone at that age. Out of his friends, Its not often that you see the main character be someone that you love to hate but I think some of that comes from the immature way that he treats the people around him. The one piece of credit that I’ll give the character is that he has a strong work ethic and works hard when he is there. Even though more recently in his career, he does more action or big drama, it is nice to see the actor’s roots where he is king of the dace floor.
John Travolta – Anthony “Tony” Manero
Karen Lynn Gorney – Stephanie Mangaw
Barry Miller – Bobby C.
Joseph Cali – Joey
Paul Pape – Double J.
Donna Pescow – Annette
Bruce Ornstein – Gus
The transfer is a 1080p AVC presentation that has been remastered in 4k from the original film negatives. The images are sharp and loaded with details in a lot of the settings. Some of the small writing on signs in both the practice rooms and hardware store are incredibly easy to read. The picture quality is up there from the 4k restoration maintaining the film grain and allure that it easily pulls off. The grain can become a little much when the contrasting fights the grain but this rarely happens throughout either cut of the film. The colors are brilliant with the time period being loaded with bright coloring in the clothing as well as the lighting in the club.
The audio is a lossless Dolby TrueHD 5.1 mix that is incredible. The voices are clear and natural as well as the effects. The sounds of the city is alive whether its when Tony is walking around the neighborhood or screwing around on the bridge. The strongest part of the mix is the music. The beats from the Bee Gees and the other artists on the soundtrack really push all of the highs, mids, and lows. This creates a sound that immerses you during these scenes.
SUPPLEMENTS & PACKAGING
-Audio Commentary: Director John Badham – Only available on the theatrical cut.
-70s Discopedia: This is a pop-up track of trivia that is available on both cuts of the film.
-Catching the Fever: This is a 5 part series of extras about the film and its inception.
-A 30 Year Legacy: This featurette is about how the movie has become a mainstay in pop culture over the years.
-Making Soundtrack History: This looks at how the music from the movie, like the previous extra, has been a mainstay in pop culture.
-Platformers & Polyester: This looks at the clothing and costumes from the movie and how they capture the feel of the time period.
-Deejays & Discos: This featurette discusses how they landed on the music from the Disco days and how it moved the film forward.
-Spotlight on Travolta: Here is a look at the actors the film and beyond.
-Back to Bay Bridge: This featurette is with actor Joseph Cali recalling some of the locations from the film.
-Fever Challenge!: This mini game has the viewer dance along with the moves on screen.
-Dance Like Travolta with John Cassese
1 Blu-ray Disc
Theatrical – 118 mins
Director’s Cut – 122 mins
1080p AVC MPEG-4
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
English Dolby TrueHD 5.1
French Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish Dolby Digital Mono
Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1
THE BOTTOM LINE:
SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER is one of those movies that should be viewed at least one time because of its impact on pop culture. I’ll admit, this was my first time watching the movie and I found it enjoyable. I really liked how Travolta played this character that is completely unlikable and made the jerk in him convincing. As for the Blu-ray, both the audio and video get top marks. This remaster was done well with great colors and immersive sound. There are loads of bonus features that are new but some are carried over from the 2007 release. Overall, this is one for the fans or someone who is looking to upgrade from the DVD. Whichever you are, I would definitely recommend giving it a look.