Thursday, March 30, 2006

Musicals . . .

I know on Thursdays I usually have some great insightful post about law school. Tonight I had fully intended to write about job interviews and how interviewers ask the stupidest questions, but the three hour interview I had this week that I was going to base this post on, went better than I thought. No stupid questions were asked. I will write more about it later, but for now, this is a post from my ever-expanding emergency archives:

What ever happened to the great American Musical? I remember having wet dreams about Ariel, Belle, and Jasmine. Not only for their cartoon hotness, but their ability to burst into song. I was raised on movies like The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, and The Sound of Music. What was the last great movie to actually be centered around songs and characters singing?

Sir Elton John may be the one guy in music whose opinion I respect. He called Eminem a genius (and yes, Elton knew about the whole gay-bashing thing), and said that the South Park movie was one of the greatest movies of all time. I have to agree. I am a sucker for musicals, and South Park Bigger Longer and Uncut is the only musical that has come out in recent memory that was any good (not that there is any competition). Sure you can argue for Moulin Rouge, but I lost all respect for Ewan McGregor when he was in Blackhawk Down (Brits should not play Americans).

These days, the studios have found that using "“Names"” to voice characters is a better way to box office stardom. Why the hell else would they cast David Spade? As I recall, the Disney movies of yore did pretty damn well without resorting to lame gimmicks to get people in the theaters.

So I was watching the South Park movie, and there were four songs within the first fifteen minutes. This is genius. A well written song is powerful. Unfortunately, the mass media has begun to feel that this is not the case. I am here to tell them that people want to hear songs. Even The Simpsons has backed off on the songs. Is there anything funnier than the Mono-Rail song? I don'’t think so. Yet, The Simpsons creators have determined that it is too hard to write a good song. This is one of the reasons that the show has dropped off in the last few years.

To tie up this rant, the industry'’s decision to move away from musicals is one of the reasons I do not watch movies anymore. The studios try to rely on things like name actors to get people into the theaters, not quality movie writing. Need evidence? The nominees for the Best Picture for the Oscars were all movies that no one went to see, because they are depressing as hell. They have yet to figure out how to write a positive movie that people want to see. How can this be rectified? The answer is obvious, more musicals.

[Immediate Edit: Not my best work, but hey, you read it.]

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