I now blog over at The Eyre Guide! This blog is an archive of my past posts.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Movie Musical Challenge: Grease

Posted by Charlene // Tags: , ,
In Movie Musical Challenge, I'm watching all 25 picks for AFI's Greatest musicals starting from the bottom.  Number 20 is the 1978 film Grease starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John.  So for today's post, Grease is the word!

I've seen parts of this musical in the past and I'm mostly familiar with the songs, but I've never really gotten into it before so I'm happy I can finally say I've seen it.  It's a fun movie too, I think I would have really loved it when I was younger because the songs are so catchy and the heightened reality/cheesiness of some of the sequences would have appealed to me more back then.  Still I think this is a very enjoyable musical - very energetic and irreverent and the two leads are so endearing.

This musical has a great soundtrack, with the two songs written specifically for the film (Hopelessly Devoted and You're the One That I Want) being such highlights.  For these Movie Musical posts I like to highlight a favorite sequence which usually includes my favorite song, but I was torn on this one, because definitely my favorite song from Grease is 'Beauty School Dropout' but 'Greased Lightning' was my favorite sequence from the film.  It was such a cool scene - I loved that they transitioned to a fantasy setting in the middle.  I do think the music sequences in general in this movie are more appealing than the scenes - there were some minorly awkward transitions from acting to singing and back out I thought.

I loved the two leads, they were both fantastic, although John Travolta's voice is noticeably weaker (oh! and I'm astonished that Olivia Newton-John was 30 when she did this movie!) It's obvious these actors aren't teenagers, but I thought they captured the exuberance of their age very well, and their romance was so sweet.  Rizzo was a great character too - so sassy and she tries to be so tough - it seems like her backstory would have been great to explore more.  I'm glad she gets a happy ending!

I was a bit surprised that this movie was like a year in the life of these students - I was always under the impression that it was really about Sandy and Danny, but I liked that the story branched out more to talk about some of the other students, and some issues likes teen sexuality.  The whole Thunderbirds gang rivalry thing was a bit odd though - it seemed like it could be a really dangerous thing, but the film kept it just on this side of light-hearted.  I mean that race on River Road was just so dangerous!  And I felt sad that the car they spent so much time fixing up was almost immediately wrecked from that race.  I did try to not be so practically-minded as I was watching!  I guess these 'teens' just don't care about that sort of thing!

This is a fun movie musical - because of it's popularity and it's place in our culture, I can understand why it made the top 25 on AFI's list.

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