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John Travolta oozes seductiveness in Saturday Night Fever

https://www.thedailybeast.com/this-law-begins-t... (Abortion is illegal in Texas as of September 2021, with $10,000 rewards to citizens to rout out and report for arrest any citizen or clinic who desires it or performs it.) Gee, Mr. Marks....does the "meaningless and ruinous" scene between Frank and Bobby suddenly deserve a reassessment of your refined aesthetic sensibilities?
— September 1, 2021 8:16 a.m.

John Travolta oozes seductiveness in Saturday Night Fever

Where "Sex Marks the Scott": I have come to a certain revelation about why you perceive the Bobby C. character as so needless and so personally offensive. Travolta never regained deep respect as a truly great actor except for his performance in SNF, because the role of Tony was essentially the role of a weak and insecure young man playing the role of a hero who convinces others he is to be looked upon as an exemplar of infallible strength, a "star", a "god," a "sex symbol". In actuality, Travolta became a superstar/sex symbol "object" because through the complexity of his performance, he revealed an individual collapsing inwardly from a false persona, a boy unable to free himself from the illusions and values that keeps this "star" persona intact, and withers away in the light of a powerful dynamic that reveals a distorted mirror image of himself in the weakness and conformity of Bobby, his idolater, who equally cannot free himself from playing the role of a willing supplicant to Tony's false persona of "hero/god" which lead to his self-destruction. The key here being the line "there are ways of killing yourself without killing yourself" that Tony utters privately to himself after Bobby falls to his death re-enacting the false ritual of "courage" that is held as the manly "crown of achievement" and height of Tony's value system which maintains everything that is a lie within himself as well as the outer hierarchy of his society as unquestionable, unchangeable, and authoritative. In essence, Bobby is the central overriding and compelling force and catalyst of change that destroys the entire mirage of not only the main character's heroic "role" but the entire spectacle of a community's consensus "reality" (church/state/nation) and therefore destroys the fantasy of the actual "movie star" that you find so attractive in real life. Tony becomes whole in the film by admitting he's no different than Bobby, and this is why you hate the Bobby character so much. It is no coincidence that once "SNF" turned Travolta into the real-life personification of a "sex symbol", most critics have maintained for decades that he never equaled his performance in this single film as an actor (watch his performance in "Moment By Moment" which he shot mere months after completing "Fever" and in which again he plays sex object and stud to career-destroying effect) to know that SNF was a singular phenomena, of which Norman Wexler's screenplay and Miller's emotionally raw performance as Bobby were instrumental if not crucial (and fueled the Bees Gees hit soundtrack, NOT the other way around) and this combination was never to be duplicated. This is something I believe you refuse to admit you have failed to see (unlike Tony Manero) which is why you condemn the Bobby C. character as the film's major flaw. It's egotistical displacement, which mars the vast and impressive scholarship of your criticism and your work.
— August 30, 2021 2:37 p.m.

John Travolta oozes seductiveness in Saturday Night Fever

Or: There is a certain race of men that either imagine it their duty, or make it their amusement, to hinder the reception of every work of art or genius, who stand as sentinels in the avenues of fame, and value themselves upon giving Ignorance and Envy their first notice to find their prey. Or: It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly. So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat. Or: Bad critics judge a work of art by comparing it to pre-existing theories. They always go wrong when confronted with a masterpiece because masterpieces make their own rules. Or: The one whose judgment counts most in your life is the one staring back in the glass. Or: The man who becomes a critic by trade ceases, in reality, to be one at all. Or: Critics are like eunuchs in a harem; they know how it's done, they've seen it done every day, but they're unable to do it themselves. Or: A critic is a legless man who teaches running. Or: Pseudo-critics prefer to direct their remarks to the artist, but one due rather to a common impression that such an attitude is the correct one, that all art should be figuratively mutilated, and that all artists are fair game, or really grateful perhaps for a few tips. Or: The lot of critics is to be remembered for what they failed to understand. Or: There is no surer mark of the absence of the highest moral and intellectual qualities than a cold reception of excellence. Or: Reviewers are usually people who would have been poets, historians, artist themselves if they could. They have tried their talents at one thing or another and have failed; therefore they turn critic. Or: Critics are the products of their own times and biases and what they have to say about works of art is as transient and insubstantial as fashion. Or: Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods. Or: Anyone can be a critic who has bravado and a following of less-experienced admirers willing to accept their authority. Anyone. Or: The greater part of critics are parasites, who, if nothing had been accomplished, would find nothing to write about. Or: No critic writing about a film could say more than the film itself, although they do their best to make us think the opposite.
— August 28, 2021 11:13 p.m.

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