100

Film Threat

By Phil Hall
How does Xanadu qualify as the greatest movie musical? Simple: it offers nothing but pure wall-to-wall fun and nonsense to keep a smile on one’s face from the opening credits (which cleverly spoof the logo of Universal Pictures) through the end of the picture. [11 Aug 2005]
Full Review
75

ReelViews

By James Berardinelli
The film is too energetic, too jaw-droppingly campy, and too silly not to be enjoyed and celebrated on some level. "Cheesy" doesn't even begin to describe it, yet that's at the heart of its perverse charm. Now, that's entertainment!
Full Review
63

Slant Magazine

While the soundtrack is evenly split between Newton-John ballads and power-pop from ELO, neither of which sounded particularly revolutionary at the turn of the decade, Xanadu's collage of musical styles and fads inadvertently suggests the utopia of post-disco no wave, hip-hop's emerging legacy of sampling and the DIY spirit of mash-ups. (I mean, if you want to be kind.)
Full Review
50

Chicago Sun-Times

By Roger Ebert
A mushy and limp musical fantasy, so insubstantial it keeps evaporating before our eyes. It's one of those rare movies in which every scene seems to be the final scene; it's all ends and no beginnings, right up to its actual end, which is a cheat.
Full Review
40

Washington Post

Xanadu cannot possibly be described as a good movie, but it can be recommended to those who can tolerate large amounts of intravenous marzipan. The music is highly enjoyable -- though perhaps more so once one gets the record album home and isn't bothered with the story -- and the film so unerringly airy that it has a beneficent, tranquilizing, bemusing effect.
Full Review
40

The New York Times

Like "The Wiz," though, Xanadu is desperately stylish without having any real style. A dance number featuring two teams of dancers -one group dressed as punks, the other in 1940's garb - winds up a terrible mess, because the two groups aren't dressed or choreographed to have anything to do with one another.
Full Review
20

Variety

Xanadu is truly a stupendously bad film whose only salvage is the music.
Full Review
12

The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

By Rick Groen
An actual film of unrelenting silliness. Far from being a "miracle of rare device" (yes, the movie even quotes Coleridge), this is a disaster of common occurrence - a poorly directed, ineptly edited, badly photographed bundle of celluloid. [14 Aug 1980]
Full Review
10

Newsweek

By David Ansen
Michael Beck (of "The Warriors") shows no discernible talent for musical romanticism Olivia ("Totally Hot") Newton-John sings prettily but is totally tepid, and the ever graceful Gene Kelly deserves a medal for keeping a straight face. Robert Greenwald, the director, should look into another line of work. Perhaps opening a disco? [18 Aug 1980, p.85]
Full Review
35 out of 100
Generally unfavorable reviews
Metascore® based on all critic reviews. Scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.