So kikimonster and I finally got around to seeing this disappointment last night. I'm perfectly willing to roll with inane scripts and silly pratfalls and jubliation for the sake of jubilation (including singing and dancing of course) as long as the overall experience is light-hearted and fun. But evenso, that's hard to do during this. A.O. Scott nails this film here. What would I add? Well, if anything he's too kind to the direction, editing and photography. It's an atrocious mess, and that makes it really hard to enjoy the film. And the mix of people who can sing with those who clearly can't (Pierce Brosnan is the worst, but much of the cast is surprisingly poor) messes up the tone. Now there are some fun numbers, and as long as the movie was focused on, Amanda Seyfried (finally she gets a lead role! even if she's listed at the back of the credits) and Dominic Cooper, and Christine Baranski and Julie Walters, things are fun and enjoyable. But the older men are such bad singers, and I think Meryl Streep is so terribly miscast, that the bulk of the film is somewhere between "missed opportunity" and "makes you cringe".
Which is too bad. Seyfried does her damnedest to move it along, and she is winning and charismatic and has a beautiful voice. Baranski's fun number makes you think what this film could've been if the rest of the cast could actually sing. And hey, Streep's Winner Takes It All makes you realize that even the not so hot singers could be compeling and entertaining if the film stuck to a tone and look that was fairly consistent for, oh, more than 30 seconds at a time. But sadly the movie looks so bad, is so jumpy and muddled (from the direction to the choreography), that it really doesn't work. When you can reasonably argue that the credits are the best part of a movie - that's not good.Posted by armand at August 10, 2008 02:34 PM | TrackBack | Posted to Movies