This movie is amazing...fabulous...just great! I had seen the stage production a few years ago with my parents and though I'd never really heard or cared for ABBA before, I loved the music, loved the story and just loved it. I bought the CD that night and listened to it so often that I actually wore out the CD and Josh lovingly bought me a replacement copy. When I heard that they were making it into a movie I was intrigued and knew that I had to see it. I could only imagine that the movie would be beautiful - with a location like Greece how could it not? but I wondered how they would incorporate the music...the whole plot and much of the dialogue stems from the ABBA songs...so would this be a musical? How would they do it? I couldn't wait for it to come out...and finally this past weekend it was here. We saw it on Saturday afternoon along with my parents, Kelly & David and a huge crowd of all ages, though mostly women. The movie began with the waters around Greece...bright gorgeous blue with light sparkling like diamonds...as Sophie walks to the mailbox singing "I Have a Dream" as she mails the invitations to Sam Carmicheal, Bill Anderson and Harry Bright. From that moment on I was hooked...happy...and dying to sing along!
Though I loved the stage version, the movie was so much better in a variety of ways for me. Many of the songs I had never really warmed up to, but watching it larger than life on the big screen I was amazed to discover how much more interesting and understandable the story became. When you realize that basically this story stems from visually expressing the lyrics of all these ABBA songs and tying them together into a story that not only makes sense but also is interesting....it just blows me away to think about it. Songs that before were just okay are now favorites since I've seen the emotion and story connected to them - SOS, The Winner Takes It All, Slipping Through My Fingers...these three specifically really touched me.
Meryl Streep is phenomenal...she has such joy, such visible emotion in this role and not too bad of a singer. When she sings Mamma Mia I loved how much she got into the emotion and feelings of the song and literally rolled around....it was great. And her song The Winner Takes It All was full of passion, emotion and just blew me away. All of the casting was great. I loved the men - Pierce Brosnan, Colin Firth and Stellan Skarsgard. They were perfect and though at times it was a little silly to see them singing...I love that they took this chance with their reputations and had fun with it.
Fun is the best way to describe this movie. It is all about fun, joy, happiness, silliness, and just being all out what you feel. These actors are not professional singers and because of this they don't sound perfect. But they sound full of joy and just happiness at being able to be in this movie. The fact that they aren't perfect just makes it that much more realistic and that much more fun. I had to go out an buy the movie soundtrack as soon as we finished watching the movie - and thankfully it was already out and able to be purchased. I like what what written in the insert -
"Although none of the actors had much experience in the recording studio, they were undaunted and completely at ease singing the classic ABBA songs. The sessions were a joyous process which you can hear on this recording, that not only brings back that fantastic experience of watching the film, but also perfectly captures the heartwarming, feel-good spirit that is MAMMA MIA!"
It is soooooo true...this is a heartwarming, feel-good movie and you must see it! Enjoy the fun that it is...it is not supposed to be too deep, it is not supposed to make you think too much...it is all about joy and love and fun. Keep those thoughts in your mind and let yourself enjoy the joy that it this fabulous movie. Also, make sure you stay for the credits, they sing two more songs and their outfits alone are worth the price of admission, at least that's what my sister said. :)
And if you hate it, don't tell me...my mind it made up and I LOVE it! :)