Stuck In The '80s
  • Stuck in the '80s
  • Steve Spears

The Bee Gees fared as well in '80s as the movie 'Staying Alive'

Yesterday we examined Sylvester Stallone in front of the screen but today we catch Sly behind the camera and make amends with the Bee Gees with their slow jam Someone Belonging To Someone.

Stallone directed three movies in the '80s, but two of them were Rocky III and IV. His foray outside the Rocky movies was Staying Alive, the sequel to Saturday Night Fever. Staying Alive remains the only film Stallone directed but didn't star in, unless you argue about the cameo of Stallone bumping into John Travolta on the streets of New York - which is shown in the video for Someone Belonging To Someone.

With the phenomenon that was the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack, it only made sense to bring back the Bee Gees to perform on the soundtrack of Staying Alive. I would think by now, everyone has moved past picking on the Bee Gees for their affiliation with the disco era. Of the thirty Top 40 hits the Bee Gees scored, the first thirteen were from 1967 to 1972 and were harmonic pop songs, but many only remember their rule over the Disco Era with eight number one songs including a mind-blowing six in a row with songs like Stayin' Alive.

In the '80s, the disco backlash began in the U.S. and radio and the buying public bailed on the Bee Gees. Today's song from Staying Alive, Someone Belonging To Someone, only made it to No. 49 on the charts in 1983. The video for Someone Belonging To Someone is a mix between performance and movie clips showing Travolta with his new dance love interest - Cynthia Rhodes. Rhodes was the Ginger Rogers of '80s movies, dancing in Xanadu, Flashdance, Dirty Dancing and Staying Alive.

Staying Alive is a mixed bag of opinions as IMDB only gives it 4.5 rating and Entertainment Weekly declared it the worst sequel ever in 2006. However, Staying Alive was a box office smash, finishing in the Top 10 rankings of 1983 and the soundtrack was nominated for a Grammy and spawned the wonderful hit Far From Over by Sly's brother, Frank Stallone (Yes, I still can't think about that song without thinking of the SNL short with Martin Short/Harry Shearer/Christopher Guest as synchronized swimmers). There are a couple of uncredited cameos of people "before they were famous" in Staying Alive. If you look real close, you can catch Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi) in Frank Stalllone's on-film band and Patrick Swayze in a dance tryout line.

Maybe some of the reason we've come to celebrate the Bee Gees rather than ridicule them is that at age 70, Barry Gibb (the oldest of the four Gibb brothers) is the only surviving Gibb brother as twins Maurice and Robin plus younger brother Andy Gibb have already passed away.

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