Friday, July 18, 2008

Mama Mia: Meryl Streep.

When I first heard that they were making a Mama Mia movie, I was mildly irritated. I'm not a huge ABBA fan (though I do think they're kind of silly and fun), and while I've never seen the musical, I was always just a little annoyed at the thought of this jukebox-type musical. Creating a story based on a pre-existing collection of music just isn't the best way to craft a well-written piece of theatre, in my opinion. You should start with a strong story. But you know what? Mama Mia looks like a lot of fun. And I am also of the opinion that theatre/film doesn't need to always be compelling and insightful. It doesn't have to have a world-changing message. Sometimes it's ok "just" to entertain -- escapism is one of the reasons the entertainment industry has survived all these years; not just because of thought-provoking art, but because of shows that don't necessarily make you think. We think all day at work, sometimes it's nice to sit back and be entertained. I do believe that the best entertainment will both make you think and give you simple pleasure, but I don't think that it all needs to be that way.

Anyway, I love Meryl Streep, and will see anything she does. Ever. She is just so fantastic. And I love that the producers extended the offer for her to be in the film because of her performance in Mother Courage (note: this is a weird review. it starts off saying it's not great, and then praises it for the entirety of the review, but then again, it IS a brilliantly difficult play to produce - where often the individual performances outweigh the production as a whole). That's Meryl for you though, from Brecht to ABBA in one fell swoop.

I'm seeing Mama Mia with my college roommate when I go home in a few weeks, and I'm really excited. I think I'm not ashamed to admit it anymore either. It looks like so much fun! And the girl playing Sophie (the main girl, the daughter, the one getting married - I had to look it up on imdb) is from Mean Girls! And people (read: I'm excited about Meryl) do their own singing! YEAH!

how could you not love this woman?


  1. I'm PROUD to admit I'm seeing this in theaters! I will support any movie musical production. Plus, I saw the stage version this year, and while light & silly, it's still great fun. Nothing wrong with pure entertainment as you point out. :)

  2. I was coerced into seeing Mamma Mia (the play), which ended up being great... as for the movie version, sounds fun, though it's awkward to think of ol' Pierce trying to sing, yeeesh