Staying Alive (1983): Stallone’s Sequel to Saturday Night Fever, again Starring John Travolta

A sequel to Saturday Night Fever (1977), which was both an artistic and commercial success, Staying Alive is a poorly crafted dance musical in every respect.

Staying Alive

Theatrical release poster

It’s orchestrated, rather than directed, by Sylvester Stallone, who also co-produced and co-wrote the film with the original Saturday Night Fever producer and writer, Robert Stigwood and Norman Wexler.

Our Grade: D (1/2* out of *****)

John Travolta reprises his part as dancer Tony Manero, and he is supported by Cynthia Rhodes, Finola Hughes, Joyce Hyser, Julie Bovasso, and dancers Viktor Manoel and Kevyn Morrow.

Along with Homefront, this is one of only two films that Stallone wrote without being the star (although he does make a cameo appearance).

The choreography was done by Dennon and Sayhber Rawles.

The title of the film comes from the Bee Gees song of the same name, which was used as the theme song to Saturday Night Fever; it’s also played during the final scene of Staying Alive.

The title also reflects Tony’s circumstances at the film’s beginning, in which he is barely surviving as he pursues his dream of making his dancing career.

Unlike Saturday Night Fever, Staying Alive was unanimously panned by critics; it holds a score of 0% on Rotten Tomatoes.

Nonetheless, it was a box office success, earning $65 million at the box-office, on a $22 million budget.

Stallone’s younger brother Frank’s song, “Far from Over” peaked at #10 on the Billboard “Hot 100” and the Cashbox charts.