Musical

Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (2018)

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Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (2018)

Director:

Ol Parker

Starring:

Lily James

Amanda Seyfried

Plot:

Five years after the events of Mamma Mia! (2008), Sophie prepares for the grand reopening of the Hotel Bella Donna as she learns more about her mother’s past.

Review:

I’ve been waiting to rent this for what feels like forever. I would have loved to have seen it in theaters, but oh well. I think all of that excitement ended up working against me. I was hoping for a light hearted, music filled, fun story and that’s only kind of what I got.

Donna, Meryl Streep, is dead and her daughter Sophie, Amanda Seyfried, has built the hotel into what Donna had always planned. The movie was a prequel and sequel, and while I normally hate prequels that part was what I enjoyed the most. Young Donna, Lily James was fun to watch, she was sweet and beautiful and completely optimistic. Her daughter, on the other hand, was in mourning and it was a harsh tonal shift for me. I think I might have enjoyed it more if it was a prequel and that’s a bit crazy to me.

We got to see everyone from the original, but not much has really changed there. In fact none of the side characters seem to have grown in any way since the 70s.

All in all I was a bit disappointed by Mamma Mia Here We Go Again, it lacked a lot of what I loved about the original. I am still kind of hoping for a third, but maybe it can be something much more positive and happy.

3/5

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Pitch Perfect 3 (2017)

Pitch Perfect 3

Pitch Perfect 3 (2017)

Director:

Trish Sie

Starring:

Anna Kendrick

Rebel Wilson

Brittany Snow

Plot:

Following their win at the world championship, the now separated Bellas reunite for one last singing competition at an overseas USO tour, but face a group who uses both instruments and voices.

Review:

Pretty sure this movie didn’t need to be made. It lacked a lot of what I enjoyed about the previous movies and was honestly a constant barrage of awkward moments. I like Rebel Wilson and her character but her arc was out there.

I can’t remember a single thing I liked about this movie now that I’m thinking back on it. They used the plot device that I hate where it starts off and then flashes back. The characters were all floundering in life and being very foolish. It was just an unnecessary movie.

2/5

Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story (2007)

Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story (2007)

Director:

Jake Kasdan

Starring:

John C. Reilly

Jenna Fischer

David Krumholtz

Kristen Wiig

Plot:

Singer Dewey Cox overcomes adversity to become a musical legend.

Review:

Recently I had the pleasure of a re-watch of Walk Hard. Even after several viewings this movie still makes me laugh.

The film starts with Dewey and his brother playing outside, through constant verbal and physical cues you know the brother is going to end up dying and the movie does not disappoint. He halves himself, a common occurrence on a farm that uses machetes I’m sure, and before he dies he tells Dewey he’ll have to be doubly good for the both of them. No pressure at all.

The movie follows Dewey as he starts in music and evolves as an artist. There are jabs at known musician stereotypes and tons of guest stars that make the whole thing hilarious. It’s also got a surprisingly entertaining sound track.

Seriously, if you haven’t watched Walk Hard by this point I highly recommend it.

5/5

Holiday Inn (1942)

Holiday Inn (1942)

Director:

Mark Sandrich

Starring:

Bing Crosby

Fred Astaire

Marjorie Reynolds

Plot:

At an inn which is only open on holidays, a crooner and a hoofer vie for the affections of a beautiful up-and-coming performer.

Review:

In the movie Bing Crosby’s character decides that he’s done being a performer, he wants to be a farmer because it’s so much easier. Clearly he knows nothing about farming and quickly realizes it and decides that the best thing for him to do is turn his farm into an Inn where it’s only open on holidays.

Interesting the hotel chain took their name from this movie.

Alright, so the movie hasn’t aged very well. The music is great, but at one point they dress up in black face and they don’t treat Marjorie Reynolds very well, and they’ve got a servant that’s the usual stereotype for the era. Honestly, I sadly forget these things and seem to only remember the music and how much I like it.

I love Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire, and I end up watching this movie most Christmases, but I wish it was better.

4/5

The Bells are Ringing (1960)

The Bells are Ringing (1960)

Director:

Vincente Minnelli

Starring:

Dean Martin

Judy Holliday

Fred Clark    

Plot:

Ella Peterson is a Brooklyn telephone answering service operator who tries to improve the lives of her clients by passing along bits of information she hears from other clients. She falls in love with one of her clients, the playwright Jeffrey Moss, and is determined to meet him. The trouble is, on the phone to him, she always pretends to be an old woman whom he calls “Mom.”

Review:

For a brief time growing up we lived near an old video rental store and they had tons of musicals that I ended up loving. This was one of them. I was lucky enough to stumble across a DVD of it on my most recent trip to the McKay’s in Chattanooga (best used bookstore I’ve been too).

The songs aren’t up to Rogers and Hammerstein but what I really love is the story. Ella, Judy Holliday, is klutzy and sweet, so naturally she falls in love with playboy Dean Martin. It’s cute, but after my most recent viewing I think part of why I like it is nostalgia.

4/5