The long awaited "Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again" is out, and it exceeded our wildest dreams.
The original "Mamma Mia!" has remained my favorite movie since I first saw it in my best friend's living room, with her mom, 10 years ago. On that day we declared "Mamma Mia" to be "our movie," so it was only fitting that she drive home two and a half hours from her internship in Virginia to see it with me opening night.
And boy, was it worth the drive.
We spent the evening singing and dancing along in our seats, surrounded by gals and gays of all ages who share our same love for "Mamma Mia!"
Everything about the movie was magic.
Before I dive in and spill some of the most memorable moments from "Mamma Mia 2," if you haven't seen it yet and don't want to be spoiled, (though I always do) I wouldn't recommend reading any further.
Go see the iconic film and come back and to me!
1. Lily James aka Young DonnaGiphy
In my opinion, the ultimate success of this movie was riding solely on Lily James' shoulders, and she did NOT disappoint.
When I saw the first trailer for "Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again," and noticed that Meryl Streep didn't seem to be in it, I was nervous. How can this be?
"A 'Mamma Mia 2' without Meryl, how dare they," I thought, and then I heard Lily James' rendition of "Mamma Mia" and I knew we'd be safe.
The only person who could give young Donna justice is Lily James.
Amazing casting, just amazing.
2. The soundtrack was perfectGiphy
A mix of everyone's favorite's from the first film, including "Dancing Queen," "Mamma Mia," "Super Trouper," and "I Have A Dream," with a whole new list of ABBA originals to add to our Road Trip Playlist.
3. Sophie's 3 dads: young and original versionsGiphy
"And I told everyone," IYKYK that is one of my favorite lines out of the whole movie!
"Waterloo" just WATERLOO! Actually, the entire young Harry scene was equally cringy and amazing and I'm here for it.
The entire theater was silent when we first see "Bill" 10 years later, but everything's OK because that's his "twin"! Thank God.
OK, young Bill is EVERYTHING. I was ready to see Mamma Mia 2, 10 more times that night JUST for young Bill.
He just loved Donna so much, I'm not crying, you're crying.
He saved the horse, but he's engaged, I'm torn.
4. Donna and the Dynamos, again young AND originalGiphy
The movie started with young Donna and the Dynamos performing "When I Kissed The Teacher" and the crowd on and off the screen immediately went wild.
And I had goosebumps when Sophie performed "Super Trooper" in her mom's place between Rosie and Tanya near the end of the movie.
Young Rosie and Tanya were exactly how I would picture young Rosie and Tanya!
Everything connects when we find out that Rosie has always had a thing for Bill, and Tanya has always been, well Tanya.
I have no doubt that there was something in Cher's contract that specifically noted how she would steal the show.
From the moment she arrives with "That's the best kind of part little girl," to "Fernando," everyone in the cast knew this was actually Cher's movie, and they were just her back up.
6. Donna as a ghost at Sophie's daughter's baptismGiphy
At this moment, I was so overwhelmed with emotions I just wanted to call my mom and say I'm sorry for everything bratty I've ever done to her. "Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again" made me feel THAT. Now that's an impactful movie.
Donna is visible only to Sophie as the two sing "My Love, My Life" while the scene flashes back to Sophie's baptism in that same church, as Sophie is baptizing her daughter in the present.
That's good stuff.
The screenwriter's choice of killing off Donna was a BOLD move, but after seeing the movie I can't imagine a better way to tell her story.
If you haven't seen "Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again," please do!
I left the theater feeling better about life, and I know you will too.