Monday, August 20, 2007

TV Movie Review

High School Musical 2

So, after watching this made-for-tv movie about 5 times in three days, including a sing-along version (although I haven't watched it all the way through yet)....I have concluded that this one is a good one. If you having been living in the dark (or a kid-free life) may not know about this phenomenon...but it is a big one. Last year, High School Musical (HSM) came out on Disney Channel and we happened upon it....and loved it. Our daughter is at prime age for this kind of thing and she is obsessed. The first one was good and really got kids into musicals (as perhaps seeing Singing in the Rain or the Wiz did for us). From there...several stage shows, a concert tour, an ice show (what doesn't look good on ice?!), merchandise!!! have been created. The soundtrack was the best selling album of 2006! So, of course, the producers are seeing sequels (#3 is in the works).

So, after months of promos....High School Musical 2 finally premiered on Friday. We hosted a party of pre-teen girls who giggled, sang, and danced along with the new movie. They proved themselves true fans and rocked out on some commercial-break HSM trivia. The girls liked it but agreed that the first one was better (I think because of its originality). And all of them thought Zac Efron was a bit too cheesy and wanted more of the other teen hunks (especially Corbin Blue). But they loved the music and dance numbers and, of course, my daughter feels obligated to watch it whenever it is on.

This one takes place over the summer of their junior year. Amazingly, they all get jobs at the same place, a country club owned by the family of the movie's villain, Sharpay (played well by Suite Life's Ashley Tisdale). I suppose the major conflict is Sharpay's quest to get Troy (Hairspray's Zac Efron) all to herself. After a lot of Efron's hairdo and solos, all ends happy (complete with a pool party).

The songs in this one are as good as the first...Tisdale's Fabulous and You are the Music in Me as well as I Don't Dance (replacing the basketball dance with baseball here) are the best. The dancing is great Broadway-style choreography with some hip-hop mixed in. There are several moments reminiscent of Dirty Dancing (e.g. talent show, the staff singing and dancing together on breaks) and Grease (just watch the opening number). I wanted more of Gabriella (Vanessa Hudgens), Chad (Blue), and Taylor (Monique Coleman, who is looking a little too old to be in hs...being 23)...this was a bit too much Troy . I am waiting to see Efron act as something besides 'most popular guy in school'. I also wasn't sure if it was because Hudgens and Efron are real-life sweethearts or acting ability...but there better be some health class sex ed in the next one because it sure looked like they were ready to get it on.

But overall, highly enjoyable. I'm sure the soundtrack will be played often in our house and car. I'm not sure its ready for the movie theater (as the 3rd one is proposed to be). however. And I not sure the future of HSM 2 (I doubt they will make a stage show of this one...but perhaps add some of the songs into the ice show). Check it the very least so you will be hip with the youngsters.

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