Thursday, January 15, 2015

Thursday Movie Picks #27: Musicals




Hello there and welcome to Thursday Movie Picks a weekly series where you share three movie picks each Thursday. The rules are simple simple: Each week there is a topic for you to create a list of three movies. Your picks can either be favourites/best, worst, hidden gems, or if you're up to it one of each.For further details visit the series main page here.

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This week's Thursday Movie Picks is Musicals.

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When I set some of the themes for the 2015 Thursday Movie Picks I tried to tie in the theme to some current big release. I had then referred to IMDB and apparently it showed that Into the Woods is released this week. Only recently did I realise that the location had been set to local release dates and that Into the Woods has been released about 2 weeks ago everywhere else. Oh well there goes my careful planning. 

Anyway this week's theme is musicals. It's not a genre that I usually drift towards; I usually can't stand the stagy-ness, the overacting, and the talking and breaking into song which are common in a lot of musicals. Since I haven't watch a great many musicals to come up with hidden gems this week I'm going to go with three that really won me over becoming some of my favourite movies.

This is a childhood favourite. I watched this so often then. It's a fun teen flick with great catchy songs. It's also set in the 50's which means they're all in the cute colourful costumes and as a kid I just fell in love with Grease.

Like I said, I'm not big on musicals and I was so reluctant to see this when it came out but was eventually persuaded to and I love it. I love the story, the visuals and its use of re-spun pop music which were all perfectly used. And it has actors that can act without overacting even though it is set in this wild theatrical world.

This this! Is this even considered a musical? It is so different from any of the musicals I've seen before and honestly I don't care because it's great. It has this quiet and low key way of storytelling, and often it just seems the cameras just happen to be there catching the people in it meeting and making music, it's just so organic. Then couple that with the brilliant music it's just magic. The music of Once is also exactly the kind of music I love to listen to, so yeah I definitely fell for Once...not slowly but at once.

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So that's it...my three picks. What three movies made your list today?

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Check out my past Thursday Movie Picks

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16 comments:

  1. I can't believe I haven't seen Grease! I really need to rectify that soon. HELL YES to your other two. I recently wrote an open letter of love to Once ( http://afistfuloffilms.blogspot.com/2014/12/john-carney-hates-loveor-does-he.html ). I had so many musicals on my long list...trimming was so hard. I ADORE this genre!!!

    Great picks, and great theme this week :-D

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    1. You haven't? Get on to it...it's such a fun musical.

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  2. Yes!!!! Grease is a household favorite for my family. It truly is one of my favorite musicals of all time. Surprisingly, I've never seen Moulin Rouge even though I think my wife has. I keep meaning to fix that, but never can get around to it. Haven't seen Once either, but it sounds very interesting. Great post.

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    1. Both Moulin Rouge and Once are great and are like total opposites. Moulin Rouge uses big pop songs and cleverly fits it in the story while Once is all about the indie music.

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  3. Yes! I absolutely adore Once. All these picks are wonderful to be honest. I watched Grease so much when I was in grade school.

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  4. Darn it, I didn't even get time to think about this one. I'll have to see if I can come up with anything for next week's.

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  5. I think I picked up on all the Grease songs before I even watched the movie (which meant singing along to almost all of it). Moulin Rouge is my favorite musical of all time. I haven't seen Once, but I have been hearing some great things about it.

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    1. I was also introduced to Grease through the music. My father had the vinyl record of the soundtrack.

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  6. Like most everyone I love Grease. Remember seeing it in a packed theatre the first time which was fun because the crowd was very into it which made it even better. Moulin Rouge is visually a knockout but I just don't like Kidman so that took away from it. Still have to see Once.

    I'm a big musical fan but the category is so broad I thought I'd do a couple themes within the theme and chose three musical biographies where the songs are more performance based than films where the characters just burst into song.

    1. Love Me or Leave Me (1955): Doris Day plays 20's songtress Ruth Etting and James Cagney her first husband Marty "The Gimp" Snyder. For a film made in the 50's the subject matter is pretty dark. Etting is plainly shown as a shamelessly climbing user, Snyder a violent abuser and their relationship as sadomasochistic.The film is solid dramatically and in her best performance Doris, whose voice is at it's peak, sings a huge chunk of the American Songbook. Make sure to see the letterbox version.

    2. The Rose (1979): It's a wild ride down the rabbit hole with Bette Midler in this pseudo Janis Joplin biography. I wouldn't say she's the whole movie, Alan Bates and Fredric Forrest are strong in support but she's definitely the engine that makes it go. The songs are excellent, they aren't necessarily era appropriate but they fit the story.

    3. La Vie en Rose(2007): The film's non linear approach can be confusing at times especially for those who don't speak French (like me) but it quickly becomes compelling and that's because at the center of the film is the brilliant performance of Marion Cotillard as Edith Piaf, as hugely talented as she was self destructive. She performs all of "the little sparrow's" best known songs and more.

    Honorable mention-I'll Cry Tomorrow: Susan Hayward does her own (quite capable) singing and dancing as 30's Broadway star Lillian Roth who drank her way from the top to skid row then fought her way back again becoming one of the first famous proponents of Alcoholics Anonymous.

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    1. Have never heard of 1. but it sounds interesting. 2. I've heard of and 3. I think I was one of the viewers that was left confused because I didn't enjoy the movie.

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  7. Always a fan of Grease, I remember Moulin Rouge being really good but I haven't watched it in so long that I don't remember anything about it. That leaves Once, which I haven't seen any of yet but will definitely add it to my list of movies to check out someday..

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    1. You don't remember Moulin Rouge? How about the music? You've got to see it again some day. And definitely check out Once.

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  8. Excellent picks, especially Moulin Rouge, which I loved but haven't seen since it came out. And Once is one of the best love stories ever told. I picked Grease as well. You sort of have to, right?

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    1. I agree it is one of the best love stories ever told. And it didn't even evolve drinking and drugs which tend to fill stories about love and music.

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  9. I'm constantly surprised by the cultural prominence of Grease - it feels like just as much of a cultural touchstone as The Wizard of Oz, and that's saying a LOT! Moulin Rouge is so spectacular - the Elephant Love Medley just gets me every time. One of the most perfect musical numbers ever filmed. And I cannot say enough good things about Once. Perfection.

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    1. I too am surprise by the love Grease has been receiving this Thursday. I love Grease but I thought everyone love to hate it now because Sandy went all bad girl to win the guy.

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