The Potential Of And The Need For Movie Musicals
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The Potential Of And The Need For Movie Musicals

I believe movie musicals have their place in the greatness of cinema.

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The Potential Of And The Need For Movie Musicals
Mark Solarski

Over Spring Break when I went home to recharge for the last haul of this fabulous semester (no sarcasm, actually!), I went to my brother's apartment where we spent the day looking through his collection of laserdiscs. A laserdisc is like a massive, double-sided DVD that comes in sleeves like a vinyl record would. This is what is looks like:

But I digress. On this format, we watched the 80's musical classic, "Little Shop of Horrors," with Rick Moranis. Before then, I had only heard bits and pieces of the music with a very basic understanding of the plot. Yet, it got me thinking on the effectiveness of putting a musical on the silver screen.

It has been done many times before, in things like the recent "La La Land" and the classic "Mary Poppins." Disney, especially, has continued to pump out movie musicals with recent greats like "Frozen" and "Moana."

Personally, I believe movie musicals have their place in the greatness of cinema. In fact, I wish there were more. One musical I truly wish would come to the big screen is "Ragtime." I was first introduced to this musical about four years ago when I had the chance to perform it as a member of the chorus at Lincoln Center. Not only does the musical have a powerful storyline based on E. L. Doctorow's 1975 novel, the music is absolutely phenomenal. No matter how many times I listen to "Your Daddy's Son" or "'Till We Reach that Day," I get more chills than wading in an ice bath.

Powerful musicals have been done before, just with different storylines. "Les Miserables" is the prime example. A musical I would be surprised if someone has not heard of, it made a wonderful film with the ever talented Hugh Jackman in the leading role. While the live singing brought on some criticism for (while giving a more real world atmosphere) bringing about some cringe-worthy notes. Nevertheless, it was a definite success and absolutely heart warming and wrenching. I believe that "Ragtime" could bring receive similar praise.

Another recent success has been the dazzling "La La Land." Watching the trailers, I thought it looked like it could be a decent movie. Yet, nowhere near as excited for it as I was with the "Swiss Army Man" trailer. Even when the ridiculously positive reviews came out, I had an interest in seeing it, but not a dire want. Then I actually saw it and was blown away as if I was a straw house and the movie screen was the Big Bad Wolf. While "Les Miserables" tugged at your heartstrings more strongly, "La La Land" was a delight to the eyes as well as the ears in such a way that I had the familiar, yet unfortunately rare, feeling to jump on the tables of the library and dance to the soundtrack. Even without the Best Picture Oscar - which I have not seen "Moonlight" to compare the two - "La La Land" is sure to be both a musical and romantic classic for years to come.

All-in-all, I hope to see more successful, live-action movie musicals because very recent examples show how much critics and audiences love them. Having performed in many shows on an actual stage, I am partly curious as to how different it is performing on a set in front of a camera. Maybe one day I will meet an actor/actress and be able to ask!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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