Thursday, February 12, 2009

musicals



I feel bad saying that I hate musicals. I don't hate them all. I do like some of the kid's ones that Toffee mentioned, like Oliver & Mary Poppins, and, yes, Tincanman, I like singing in the rain. And I think Ginger Rogers is unbelievable--smart, sassy, wry, and beautiful in a way that isn't often movie star material. But I seem to like musicals either completely, insanely over-the-top, like Busby, above (the fun starts at a few minutes in). And even then I'm not sure I could watch the whole movie. Or ironical, like the movie Blackpool, below, which I liked a lot, but admittedly watched in parts on youTube, so what do I know?



What does everybody else like in a musical?

12 comments:

ejaydee said...

I feel bad too. I don't hate musicals by principle. I don't mind some of the songs on their own, and my dislike is mostly aimed at the modern kind. I remember enjoying Singing In The Rain for example, and others with Fred Astaire in them, but I don't remember the titles.

Anonymous said...

The bits between the songs.

steenbeck said...

I hope I don't feel bad about saying this, too, but I think it might be...A. L. Webber that I don't like.

In reality, I love love films, and I love love music, so logically....

Abahachi said...

Why on earth should you feel bad about saying it? ALW is the spawn of Satan, his work is the pus that oozes from the suppurating sores of modern capitalism - with the possible exception of Joseph and the Technicoloured Dreamcoat, if only because I have happy memories of singing it in its entirety with friends while painting railings outside Lincoln Cathedral one summer many years ago - and his influence on the musical has been unmitigatedly awful. Apart from Les Miserables, which had some decent songs, I haven't enjoyed a single musical written since he began his unholy rise to dominance, and I now avoid them all on principle. Musicals for me mean things like Singing in the Rain, White Christmas, South Pacific and Guys and Dolls. I suppose one test might be whether you could imagine Miles Davis or John Coltrane producing a great jazz version of the songs; or, whether you've got enough jokes (one of the very many things about ALW musicals is that they take themselves so utterly seriously; the man genuinely believes he's producing art on a level with the greats of classical music, and yet it ranks far below the supposedly lightweight, throwaway genius of people like Lerner & Loewe).

treefrogdemon said...

I too loathe, nay abhor, ALW apart from Joseph AHTDC - and that exception is because all my kids were in it at one time or another at school, so we all used to sing the songs in the car.

In fact I was once (briefly) famous as the mother of the boy who played Pharaoh...people used to stop me in the street!

Abahachi said...

It has belatedly occurred to me that I have broken every rule in the book about undonding and not being gratuitously rude about music that other people might like. So, in the event that anyone on here does like ALW, apologies; I will endeavour to be more open-minded about other people's life-choices. Even if that makes my brain fall out.

Chris said...

The only musical I have actually enjoyed was Sweeney Todd, and I thought that was superb. It just avoids all the mawkishness and silly dance routines. The only boring bit (and I'm talking about Tim Burton's wonderful film) is a deliberately sweet song sung by the only innocent in the piece.
IMHO, ALW should be prosecuted for crimes against humanity, along with Simon Cowell.

Japanther said...

"Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" all the way

And agree with Aba on ALW

Abahachi said...

One of the things that I love most about old-fashioned musicals is the way that it actually seems quite natural for people to burst into song at critical moments, whereas a lot of more recent ones suffer from 'is Catesby here yet?' syndrome, creating the sense that there's a song simply because that's the pre-ordained structure. Said syndrome derives from an unspeakably ghastly musical version of the Gunpowder Plot, in which my middle brother appeared while at school, featuring the classic line: "Is Catesby here yet? No? Let's have another song."

TracyK said...

Just a quickie: that moment with the dance to The Boy With The Thorn is a real TV Moment for me. My friend leant me Blackpool, raving about it and I thought it was moderately entertaining, bar THAT moment. Love love love it! especially when DT cocks up the routine but manfully carries on.

ToffeeBoy said...

@ Abahachi - very late to this but I felt I had to comment. The unwritten rules about being gracious and respecting other people's tastes simply doesn't apply when it comes to Andr*w Ll*yd W*bb*r. The man's a complete *%$!&&

ToffeeBoy said...

For 'rules' read 'rule' - or, alternatively, for 'doesn't' read 'don't'. The choice is yours...