Pop Rocks: Six Movies for Your Memorial Day Disco Marathon

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This coming Monday is Memorial Day, when we honor the men and women who died while serving in the armed forces. You may already be planning your family barbecue, followed by your choice of stirring war movies airing on many channels throughout the weekend.

The recent deaths of Donna Summer and Robin Gibb have presented you with another option, however. Now, I'm not suggesting we subvert the original purpose of the holiday, and you should certainly pay your respects to those who were killed in the service of their country, but maybe this year you might consider also honoring those who endured the terrifying Studio 54 campaigns of the late 1970s, who contended with such enemies of freedom as John Travolta and Rick Dees, who risked it all to make a movie with Steve Guttenberg.

But seriously, how many times can you really watch Tora! Tora! Tora!?

Can't Stop the Music (1980)

This sounds like a horror movie: "No matter who you call, no matter where you run, no matter what you do...you can't stop the music"

Sound far-fetched? I'm pretty sure living with the Kardashians is Bruce Jenner's eternal damnation for appearing in this movie. In a half-shirt. I'd be willing to forgive this movie's entire existence for ten minutes' more footage of Valerie Perrine strutting, though.

Saturday Night Fever (1977)

Between the sleazy horrors depicted herein, the subterranean horrors of C.H.U.D. and the futuristic horrors of Escape from New York, I vowed never to visit the Big Apple. And while I've tried to see the attraction with Saturday Night Fever, it just ends up being laughable. Tony Manero is, at best, a dipshit. At worst, an attempted rapist. This is the kind of crap the country had to put up with under Jimmy Carter.

Guess you had to be there.

Disco Godfather

A.k.a. The Avenging Disco Godfather. I like how every disco movie trailer is shot in such a way as to make the viewer feel like they've just ingested a Herculean portion of "yay," as the kids call it.

And know this: I am a grown ass man. I've stared death (or at least permanent maiming) in the face on more than one occasion and endured the passing of dear friends, yet nothing terrifies me as much as the thought of Rudy Ray Moore on PCP. Fortunately the Disco Godfather is such a bad motherfucker even angel dust wears off after a mere five minutes.

Roller Boogie (1979) *Sigh* It was a different time, kids. A time when feathered-hair Adonises competed with each other on quad skates to save their beloved rink from mobsters; when the Van Patten family was the most powerful force in cinema; when this was considered "chunky" in America.

I don't care what Janet Maslin says, I still love you, Linda Blair.

Xanadu (1980) Gene Kelly deserved better than to have this be his final theatrical role. And Samuel Coleridge deserved better than to be a footnote to a craptastic Olivia Newton-John vehicle.

Thank God It's Friday (1978) Donna Summer was nominated for a Best Song Oscar for "Last Dance." Aside from that, you also have future Berlin vocalist Terri Nunn playing a high school student trying to win KISS tickets. This would be pretty cool, except by movie's end she and her friend have decided to forsake the Knights In Satan's Service and devote their lives to disco.

We don't take kindly to deserters in the KISS Army.

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