Hey, everyone. ”Moriarty” here. Yes, that’s right. Fanboys love ABBA. Wait... they don’t? But they love Meryl Streep, right? And Colin Firth. I KNOW that fanboys love Colin Firth. They don’t? Well, hell. At the very least, I’m secure in my knowledge that they all adore musicals, and that a talkback for reviews of the Meryl Streep/Colin Firth/ABBA musical, MAMMA MIA, which comes out soon wouldn't be remotely juvenile or homophobic. Because that would be impossible.
Went to a screening tonight of Meryl Streep's new film in SD. Yes, Mamma Mia the musical, it was pretty good. Here is my review: So, tonight I went to a screening of a new film in San Diego. The setup was that I would be attending a screening for an upcoming summer movie. With that in mind, I had no problem leaving work early to go. Of course, when I arrived, I got wind that it was for a musical movie, Mamma Mia. Ok, I wasn't seeing Dark Knight, but it was still exclusive. In case you don't know, the conceit of the film is based around a young girl who grew up on a Greek Island - she is getting married, and her single mother is throwing her wedding. More then anything she wants her dad to attend, but she has no idea who her dad is, since her mom was quite the swinger when young. So, in typical movie fashion, she invites three potential fathers who slept with her mom to the wedding, and comedy ensues as her mom is thrown into a tailspin and everyone learns the truth. All that sounds like a movie in and of itself, but it doesn't end there. The whole movie is baked into the best of ABBA's music. Every great ABBA song comes to life in the movie, from DANCING QUEEN to Super Trouper to Money Money to Voulez Vou and of course Mamma Mia. I am not a huge ABBA fan, but the songs are definitely infectious, and surprisingly I knew everyone of them, so I might have sang a long a few times, "honey honey". The "awe" scene involved the song DANCING QUEEN where a few of the cast start in the hotel with Meryl Streep (she stars in it) singing and ending on the islands dock with the entire population singing, dancing and then jumping into the water. It was a huge scene, it sounds cheese, but it really worked and the entire audience ate it up! To cap off the experience, the movie takes place on this amazing greek island. Every scene takes place in a different location on the island, with Meryl's villa being the center - I swear the movie actually makes you feel like you went on a trip to the Greek Island afterwards. How much are flights there? Infectious music, bright locations, and a fun story helped bring together what could have been a string of ABBA music videos; making it into a totally entertaining and fun film. But before I finish my review, I have to comment on the cast. Meryl leads a pretty eclectic mix of talent, including Pierce Brosnan, Colin Firth, and Christine Baranski. Although the cast sounds a bit tired, that couldn't be further from the truth. The energy they put into the singing and dancing defied their age. It was pretty amazing to see Meryl sing and dance thru every scene. I didn't even know she could sing. But the person in this movie that blew me away was Meryl's young daughther Sofie, played by Amanda Seyfried. She was awesome! She stole every scene she was in, blew out every song with her amazing voice and she is super hot. Keep your eyes out for her. At the end of the day Mamma Mia wasn't Dark Knight, but it had tons of energy, fun music, great locations and a cast that you can't help but root for, this movie was very very very ENTERTAINING! And I don't need to go to Greece soon, since I just went during this movie :)
And here's review number two.
I saw a preview of the movie version of MAMA MIA! tonight over at Horton Plaza. I’m hoping I’m the first/only person to send in a review because I want to get posted ! Anyway – I ‘d already seen the play so when I was offered tickets I jumped at the chance – I’m not sure I’ve ever even bought an ABBA record but my Dad (to this day) has the Abba GOLD tape in his car (yes, that and Roger Whittaker) so like most I know/love pretty much every major song of theirs and definitely every one in this film. The film is very much the show (except for the addition of one major award winning actress, but I’ll get to that later): a slight but cute story of a girl who’s about to get married and invites all 3 of her possible fathers (whom she never knew) to the wedding at a small isle in Greece where her Mom ( a former disco singer) runs a resort. All this unbeknownst to her Mom of course who freaks when her former paramours all show up on the same boat. Interestingly enough, the question of who is her real Dad is actually never answered – hinted at, yes but never outright answered. Anyway – that’s the whole story in a nutshell. Slim then, slim now. But I guess that’s because the showcase here is primarily the music and secondarily the beauty of a wild wedding in Greece and some really fun dance numbers. After 20 minutes I stopped waiting for any hint of a romantic mystery and just kicked back and enjoyed myself – and this is key – this movie is very, very enjoyable. Which brings me of course to the diamond in the cast crown here: M-E-R-Y-L. Look, one of the things that have made Meryl Streep such an enduring icon in her career is that she went from being an arthouse queen of the accents to being a down home, unpretentious, character actor/ comedienne – and it works for her. Here she is indeed goofy, sweet and terribly terribly beautiful (I think she’s probably playing 10 years her junior and still pulls it off ). The lady has charm – lots and lots. And while I can think of a million other actors who have great chemistry with her, Pierce Brosnan suits her very well – especially in a match up where two former lovers have to fall in love all over again after 20 years apart. Its sweet, its believable – and thank God, its age appropriate. Oh yeah, she can sing too – they said the sound mix was temp but her voice is definitely up to par for these songs. No surprise there, the number she does at the end of POSTCARDS FROM THE EDGE was fantastic. The rest of the cast is fine – not much for them to do (its definitely Meryl’s movie). The standout being AMANDA SEYFRIED who plays her daughter. She’s given some nice emotional moments to play in an otherwise sunny flick – and she adds a nice sense of warmth to the whole thing. And as far as the sunny aspect – I think this might be the very first musical to be shot in the direct sunlight of day. I liked this. Is it Chicago? Moulin Rouge? No. It’s a much simpler entertainment. I’d put it along the lines of HAIRSPRAY: Sunny. Smiley. A pleasant if not the most thought provoking way to spend $10 and 2 hours. Lornolix. Out.