Mamma Mia! Reviews
Sophie, Amanda Seyfried, lives on the Greek island of Kalokairi with her single mother Donna, Meryl Streep. As she prepares to marry her fianc´┐ 1/2 (C) Sky, Dominic Cooper, she worries about who her father is and after discovering her mother's journal she realizes she has three possible fathers. Bill, Stellan Skarsgard, is a Swedish hippie, Harry, Colin Firth, is an uptight British man who is hiding a secret and Sam, Pierce Brosnan, is a successful architect who has never gotten over Donna. She invites all three of them to her wedding leading to wacky hijinks all around and some great chances to awkwardly shoehorn in classic ABBA songs.
The staging of all the song and dance numbers is hardly as stylistically impressive as The Sound of Music (1965) or even say Newsies (1992) but the songs are undeniably great and the sight of Meryl Streep with her dress flowing behind her on a yacht is more enjoyable than anything found in West Side Story (1961). The "Dancing Queen" scene always makes me think of my mother and her indomitable spirit even as she ages naturally and the sight of a Greek woman joining Donna and her friends as they gallivant around the island inspires an inexpressible joy in me. "Slipping through my Fingers" is the one that always makes me cry and although ABBA deserve most of the credit for writing touching lyrics Streep's lines before she begins singing the song kill me every time. Every song featured on the soundtrack is a bona fide hit and that means the whole film is like a big warm hug.
The performances in the film also raise the film above the average cash grab to me. The male cast members can't really sing and nobody can really dance but they're all enjoying themselves and poking fun at their personas which is endearing. Streep is the exception as she can sing very well and she gives a fantastic performance in a movie that really doesn't ask for it. As previously the mentioned in the scenes she has with her daughter she gives a wonderful natural performance as a loving mother with a wild streak and somehow I am able to forget that she's Meryl freaking Streep. I don't usually like Brosnan and Firth but it's funny to watch them try to sing, both "SOS" and "Our Last Summer" are cringey but delightful. Baranski is perfectly cast as Tanya and her performance in the "Does Your Mother Know That Your Out" sequence is Best Supporting Actress worthy.
Don't expect something super artistic and deep when walking into this jukebox musical that made $615.7 million at the box office, expect an extremely fun romp that doesn't ask anything of you. To people who get sniffy about this film in the age of the Marvel Cinematic Universe you are not my friend because this movie manages to do much more with it's source material, ABBA music, than those films do with comics. I wouldn't place this in my Top 10 Favorite Films because I have some dignity but this is a film that I could throw on anytime, anywhere and watch uninterrupted. Girls need bad movies to love too and although I was thoroughly disappointed by Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (2018) this will always be nostalgically remembered as an integral part of my childhood.
The acting was steady for the most part, but my gosh some of the secondary actors were horrible.
The characters I personally hate and think are some of the worst in big budget movie history. In my opinion the characters were just shallow and unlikeable.
The cinematography was probably the best part of the movie and even then it wasn't spectacular.
The setting like the cinematography was strong, but a setting doesn't help with the characters and story.
The set design and costume design were steady, but I still think that they could have made it more colourful and vibrant.
The style wasn't bad, but I thought that the colour scheme was way too dull compered to the vibrant music.
The film also had a couple special effects which I can tell you were not pleasant to look at.
The film also had some very spontaneous and bad editing.
The music was hard for me because most of the songs weren't bad, but a lot of them were sung very badly especially the songs sung by Meryl Streep and Pierce Brosnan.
The story follows Sophie a girl who is getting married. She then decides to invite three men to her wedding to find out which one could possibly be her father.
The comedy in my opinion really didn't work, and just felt out of place throughout the movie.
The film is also really painful to watch and something that I hope to never watch again.
Over all I give it a 2/10 - painful to watch
There's not much of a story, but that's not the point of the movie. The point of the movie is the big musical numbers, with Hollywood actors showcasing their vocal range and singing talent. I could see myself enjoying this simplistic musical based on ABBA's biggest songs (even though I don't care for ABBA all that much) if the cast in this film could sing.
Amanda Seyfried and Meryl Streep are noticeably better than the rest of the cast, but they're also noticeably flat at times, especially Meryl Streep's performance of "The Winner Takes It All". The male cast members have more trouble hitting the right notes, as Colin Firth looked and sounded uncomfortable when he started singing, and Pierce Brosnan sounded like a horse. Or if any other farm animal comes to mind, Pierce Brosnan sounds like that too. His singing in the movie was so laughable, I could watch him sing "S.O.S." many times, as it makes me wish that this movie was campier.
Musical numbers are also awkwardly placed in the movie. During dialogues, characters would randomly start to sing, and some of the back-to-back musical numbers were grating and unpleasant to my ears. This movie is made for the fans of the musical, and while the movie can be fun at times, watching Hollywood actors do drunk karaoke isn't always a pleasant sight.
But what great music! The writers had so much to work with and could have done exceptionally well with plot. Instead, they have done exceptionally well with the musical production. It sounds grand -- almost as spectacular as ABBA. It does not capture what could have been the musical of the century, given all that it had to work with.
Also, Meryl Streep is in it.