58 of 60 people found the following review helpful
THANK GOD IT'S FRIDAY was released just as the disco craze crested, when anything and everything might happen during a night on the town, when sex was casual, and drink and drugs were still regarded in a lighthearted manner, and music wailed and blared with the likes of Gloria Gaynor and K.C. & the Sunshine Band. Within a few years Disco would be publicly declared dead--but it still lives on in the recordings... and in Donna Summer's penultimate screen image of the Disco Diva, shimmering in the spotlight beneath the mirror ball with a hibiscus tucked into her hair as she belts out her megaton hit, "Last Dance."
TGIF is best regarded as a cultural artifact, an attempt to show everything that was shiny about the Disco world without any reference to its down sides of sexually transmitted diseases, next-morning-hangovers, and serious drug addictions. The story is slight: a disco is hosting a big dance contest, and every one arrives at the door with personal ambitions. There is, of course, the singer who hopes to hit it big; two underage teen girls hot to be Disco Queens; a sweet young thing who hates polyester and is looking for Mr. Right in the wrong place; and a ladykiller looking to score his next victim. The film is most memorable for the look of the disco, which is the real star of the film, and the cast, which includes several performers on their way up: Jeff Goldblum as the lady killer; Deborah Winger as the anti-polyester good girl; and of all people a very, very young Terri Nunn, who would later score big as the front singer for the band Berlin.
There are all the usual running gags, and as a whole the film is only mildly entertaining. But then Donna Summer steps into the spotlight--and for a few moments everything that was magic about Disco lives and breathes again. For what it is--an incredibly light, mindless bit of tinsel--the film is well done, but it has an extremely limited appeal for a contemporary audience. Unless you were actually part of the disco scene and want to revisit old memories, you're better off catching it on the late-late show. But my oh my... wasn't Donna Summer something special!
55 of 65 people found the following review helpful
on May 25, 2006
...it's not the way the director meant the movie to be seen. Once again the studios have dupped the DVD buying public. This DVD version of the film is not a true widescreen of the movie (meaning as it was shown in theaters during its initial release). It is nothing more than a pan and scan version (full screen version that has been edited to fit a normal analog TV) that has been cropped at the top and the bottom. I began to notice something was askew and got out my well worn and well loved VHS edition and began to compare. (Yes, I love this cheesey movie) Well, to my suprise I was right! When are the studios gonna stop taking the cheap route and begin NOT to dupe the public. This really angers me. I have been waiting to see the movie in all its "glory". "Sony"/"Colmbia" has really lost their integrity with me and I'm sure a few others. What's with the cheap DVD edition -- no extra's -- not even a chapter index. NOT EVEN A PROPER DVD MENU! Generic garbage!Yes the DVD is in high definition (great picture and sound). Yes the price was great. Yes we finally have it on DVD. But I for one want to see the movies I buy in all their spender whather it be an "A" list movie or this one. It is a fond memory and a moment out of my past that was the best time in my life. Shame on "Sony" -- full of baloney.Shame on "Columbia" as well.Movie: ****DVD: *Sony/Columbia: zip! nada!
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on May 25, 2005
Having come of age in the Disco Era, I and many people that I know can relate better to TGIF than Saturday Night Fever, or for that matter the more recent Disco Era Movies, Studio 54, or Last Days of Disco.
For many of us going to a disco was simply fun, we were not carrying the troubles of the world with us, we were not always looking for love, and so on. It may sound strange (and maybe boring to some) but for many of us going to Disco was about great music, great dancing and great people watching.
TGIF captures this to a tee, and makes me long to be 18 again
(back in the day the drinking age was 18 in many states).
The music of course makes this movie and remember, TGIF won an Oscar for best original song (Last Dance), you will also hear a number of songs through the film that were NOT on the soundtrack.
Donna Summer makes the film with her performance of Last Dance, but anyone who has seen Donna in concert lately will know that her current live readings of Last Dance blow the movie clip out of the water, and the producers of TGIF seemed a little too obsessed with make her look like Diana Ross.
ans yes WERE IS THE DVD of this film!
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
This is not a great film, but it is a good fun B Film Miles ahead of the Village People's Can't Stop the Music. There are some gifted actors here; Goldblum; Winger Landsburg, et. al. And in a weirdly cheap way it has that Robert Altman multiple storylines and crossed characters, but it is fun to watch. Some good 70's music going on here, some fun stereotypes of the disco era, but it is never mean or overly campy. It just is what it is and that's not such a bad thing. A good nostalgic rainy day/Sunday movie.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on January 16, 2002
Cashing in on the 70's disco craze, Casablanca Records/Films released this as a summertime escape in 1978. A comic & campy look at one crazy friday night at a Los Angeles disco with a stereotypical cast of characters to match. Dance/R&B diva Donna Summer makes her screen debut as the aspiring singer Nicole Simms who tries to get noticed by the disco's hotshot DJ. Great cameo by the Commodores performing 2 of their hits for the dance contest scene. Paul Jabara (writer of Grammy/Oscar-winning hit song 'Last Dance') plays the obnoxious, know-it-all single guy who gets trapped in the stairway. Look for appearances by 2 future stars: Debra Winger as the shy, naive single girl (later starred in 'Urban Cowboy', 'Officer & Gentleman' & 'Terms of Endearment'). Jeff Goldblum as the ego-inflated, womanizing owner of 'The Zoo' disco (later starred in 'The Big Chill', 'The Fly' & recently 'Cats & Dogs'). Music soundtrack includes many disco hits of 1978 from performers such as Thelma Houston (Love Masterpiece), Love & Kisses (title song), Diana Ross (Livin'Lovin'Givin'), Patti Brooks (After Dark) &, of course, Donna Summer (Last Dance, With Your Love, Je T'Aime).
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
This is a fun movie, every bit as relevant as Saturday Night Fever in depicting the disco generation. Unfortunately the music here is not as good as in SNF's gripping soundtrack. Donna Summer is excellent as the aspiring singer getting her big break. Enough funny scenes hold the attention and it's perhaps a less sanitized view of the disco era than Saturday Night Fever, what with a transvestite shaving his beard in the men's and stuff like that. The actual disco here is much more impressive than in the other movie. Still worth a laugh or two.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on June 20, 2007
I'm giving THANK GOD IT'S FRIDAY a generous 4-stars because it's on dvd. But the production value of the dvd is worth 2-stars (maybe even 1-star). And after such a long wait, you'd think there would've been more on this dvd than just the movie.
And the movie is the only thing you'll get on the TGIF dvd. No special features and NO SCENE SELECTION. All you can do is play the movie from the cheesy menu and that's it. How sad that is. And where did they get the ridiculous picture for the cover?
I know that this movie was not the commercial hit that Casablanca and Motown (record companies) were expecting, but for this release the dvd could've given fans a little more.
TGIF is a campy film about a Hollywood nightclub called the "Zoo" and takes place during the height of the disco craze in the mid-to-late 70s. The plot involves the transformation of the lives of several different people and their search for something magical, which all takes place one eventful night at the Zoo. Anyway, where SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER was a dramatic movie/story that happened to ride on the music wave of disco, TGIF was light and humorous and driven soley by the music.
At the time, TGIF was being marketed as the "Donna Summer movie" to try and captilize on Summer's meteoric rise as a singer...well sort of. The movie was produced by Casablanca (Summer's record label) and Motown (both record companies wanting to follow the success of SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER), because they felt they couldn't miss with a movie featuring their respective artists, since they dominated the music scene during that decade. But Summer, though gaining traction as a charting artist, was yet to become the "disco queen." Her popularity exploded, coincidentally, around the same time when she had her first number one hit "MacArthur Park." So Casablanca and Motown marketed the movie as a Donna Summer film, even though it really wasn't. And you couldn't turn on a radio, during that time, without hearing the song "Last Dance" and the title song "Thank God It's Friday" (by Love and Kisses). However, Summer is only featured in a small supporting role and her on-screen time in the movie is less than 17-minutes (according to one biography), maybe even shorter than that.
But in those fleeting minutes, Summer is mesmerizing as the doe-eyed, unknown singer desperately trying to get the Zoo d.j. to play her record. She's hilarious in one scene where she starts singing badly along to "Love-to-Love You" while it's playing in the club, and she finally gets her big break on the "live" radio show from the disco that is supposed to showcase the Commodores. Summer really shined in that scene as she belted out "Last Dance" and became the perfect combination of beauty, talent, and energy; it's probably the most memorable moment in this movie. Of course there's also the performance of the Commodores, but Summer's eclipses it.
TGIF is not the best movie of all time, but there are moments of magic in it that sort of defined that era.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
"Thank God it' Friday" is a snapshot of the late seventies Disco scene. It does take one back to a time when afros and platforms ruled and everyone on the dance floor was a star! Finally available on DVD, but with no extra features except sub titles and choice of language.
The "story" takes place in one night at a disco called the Zoo, run by a young Jeff Goldblum, with all sorts of different characters there for different reasons: a wife who drags her stuffy, uptight husband there against his will, two underage girls eager to get in and try for the dance competition, two nerds (one of whom is Paul Jabara) desperate to pull the birds, a disastrous couple on a blind date, a desperate Ray Vitte as the DJ trying to get his big break by featuring the Commodores live (now, if only their instruments can get there in time!), and the queen of disco herself Donna Summer as Nicole Simms, trying to convince the DJ that she really can sing.
The soundtrack is wonderful; Donna Summer's Academy winning, show stopping "Last dance", "After dark" by Thelma Houston' Diana Ross' electro/disco "Livin', lovin' and giving" (movie version differs from soundtrack album version), "Find my way" by Cameo, "Too hot ta trot" by The Commodores, "Sevilla nights" by Santa Esmeralda, and the sultry "Do you want the real thing" by D.C. La Rue to mention a few.
Intended to rival "Saturday night fever", it didn't quite achieve that, but remains a camp classic, and a perfect barometer of the state of society at the time.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on April 10, 2006
Yes it's cheesy, but a lot of folks have been waiting a LONG time for TGIF to appear on DVD (it's been LONG out of print on VHS). The reviewers referring to the movie as a "Disco Love Boat" are pretty accurate with that description, as there are quite a few characters in several (sometimes intertwining) story lines centered around one night at a swinging LA disco. Definitely lightweight stuff here, but if nothing else the movie is a perfect pop culture curio capturing the late 70s disco era and its glitzy excesses (at least to a "PG" extent anyway!). In addition to Donna Summer and the Commodores, you'll also get to see some early performances from Jeff Goldblum and Debra Winger, not to mention a very young Terri Nunn (best known as the lead singer of Berlin). The movie itself looks fantastic on this DVD considering its age, however I had to deduct a star due to the DVD extras... simply put, THERE ARE NONE!!! No trailers, no commentary, not even a scene selection menu! Fact is, the menu provided is a generic DVD menu, with audio language choices of English and Portugese, and screen caption options and THAT'S IT (heck, even ROLLER BOOGIE had its own custom menu design, not to mention trailers and scene selection options!)... so loss of one star for apparently not giving much thought to the overall DVD package. But that complaint aside I'm definitely glad to have this on DVD after all this time, and be sure to watch at the very beginning where the Columbia logo becomes animated and does a few disco moves.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on January 11, 2004
Please Columbia Records ... can we get a DVD release of this movie happening soon?