Thursday, December 27, 2007

High School Musical 2

Hollywood called and threatened to de-throne me if I didn't talk about movies soon. And Blogger is all on my case....apparently you can't claim the title of "Movie Queen" unless you actually post about movies. Huh. So, here's me trying to keep Hollywood and Blogger happy.

We got High School Musical 2 for Christmas. I still had never seen it, as we don't have the Disney Channel at our house. I have had the entire soundtrack memorized since last August, however, thanks to my sister giving us a copy of it. I have been dying to see the movie, and, four months later, I finally got to.

I have to say, I was very pleasantly surprised to find that I like it just as much as the first one. Too often sequels just don't add up to the originals, especially if the original shot to unexpected levels of fame and high ratings. (Pirates of the Caribbean II, anyone?) I worried that the newly famous actors, complete with scandals and tabloid appearances, would have changed the way they played the bubbly, virginal characters we all came to love in HSM1. Or, that the director would have played up the cheesy, oh-so-very-Disney musical aspect, which was already just teetering on the border of too much for me in the original. But, with a few exceptions, it was fairly cheese-free.

Here's what I loved:

The music. Isn't that the very heart of HSM in the first place? At first I didn't think the songs were as catchy or addicting as the first one, but after listening to it several times, I was singing along with my very best scoops and forced vibrato. Favorites: Of course the obvious, the give-me-a-toothache-sweet duet between Troy and Gabriella, "You Are the Music in Me." And I love the second duet they sing (although I'm usually not a big fan of the gospel choir endings), "Everyday." My guiltiest pleasure on the soundtrack is Troy's "Bet On It," which has my inner hip-hopper fighting her way out to pop 'n lock. But my very favorite is Gabriella's break-up anthem "Gotta Go My Own Way." If I was a pre-pubescent girl, I'd be sobbing into my Hello Kitty handkerchief.

Troy and Gabriella. Finally past the "Are They or Aren't They?" stage, I was so relieved to see their relationship was more realistically high school than, say, Saved By the Bell, which is to say, they actually spend time together outside of school. Gabriella was the same giggly, doe-eyed sweetheart to whom I don't relate at all, and Troy, well, he's just swell. We love Troy. We love Zac. He's a great actor, great singer, great dancer, great looking. (And is it just me, or would he not be a great Edward?) He's probably the only guy that could play Troy and still maintain his heterosexuality. And the fact that he hasn't been able to get more than ten minutes into either HSM movie without having to turn it off just makes him all the more appealing. Come on, wouldn't you be a little worried if he loved tween musicals?

Ryan. A likable, minor character in HSM1, he evolved into a fully funny, lovable character in HSM2. Best line: (Ryan's dad) "Have you been working out, son?" (Ryan) "Yoga."

The scenery. Suddenly Albuquerque is at the top of my list of places to live. But only if it's at a country club with a lush, green golf course and a pool with a rock waterfall.

Things I could have done without:

Troy's dance number to "Bet On It." My hubby told me about a spoof on YouTube they did where they put that scene to "The Hills Are Alive" (Sound of Music). I never saw it, but watching this scene made me laugh, just picturing it. I can totally get where their inspiration came from.

When Troy touches Gabriella's nose as they sing their final duet, and she responds with a giggle, her 55th of the movie. I was choking down the bile.

Seriously, could they not put Troy in anything other than blue? I kept track during the movie. He wore two shirts (of about 12) that were not blue. We get it, he has amazingly blue eyes. I half expected Chad to show up in a scene wearing one of his expressive t-shirts that said "Troy has amazingly blue eyes." It would have been less obvious.

Claim To Fame:

The coolest thing about High School Musical 2 is that my awesome cousin Jen and her husband, Cory, are in it. They walked on as extras and made the final cut. In the talent show scene at the end, they're sitting behind Ryan and Sharpay's parents, smiling and clapping. (Cory is the really tall guy.) It's so cool, and I still can't get over it when I see them sitting there. I'm trying really hard not to hate Jen for being in a movie before me, but who can hate Jen?

So here's hoping HSM3 brings just as much great music, sweet romance, and a polychromatic wardrobe for Troy.


Shayla said...

Haven't seen it yet...and we have the Disney channel. :-) Love your review, though, as always. "If I was a pre-pubescent girl, I'd be sobbing into my Hello Kitty handkerchief." Too funny!

Ms. Kristen said...

Hey, Alicia! That was a great play by play! You need to start a colum in the local newspaper! I love High School Musical as much as you do! Katlyn got High School Musical Sing it....Playstation 2....kareoke game! I love it more than she does! Have fun with your kids!

Heather said...

Next time I head to ABQ I'll invite you. But heads up there are NO Country Clubs like that one! :)

dandee said...

Best review to date. You are so funny! How do you do it? Your writing is fabulous. Seamless, interesting, you stay on topic, follow your points with examples...I should have paid more attention in Mr. Wright's class.

meohmyers said...

You should be getting paid for your reviews! Loved it! I need to see these movies - still haven't...

You are such a GREAT writer!!

meohmyers said...

That's funny! We were commenting on each other's blogs at the same exact time!

My friend Leslie uses pYzam for her blogger templates, then Heather snagged the best one! So I had to go there myself and see what was left. You won't be disappointed! Go to the top of my blog and click on the bright orange bar for more template ideas!

Marilyn said...

Whew! Thank goodness you posted about a movie. I was beginning to think I would have to confront you about your blog title...and I really hate confrontation!

Great review. I find it really refreshing to have a slew of family friendly movies (that may border on cheesy) for my children to watch over.and.over. again!

Oh, and you are totally right, who could hate cousin Jen?!?

tharker said...

We love us some HSM2 around here too. Everyone's right, your movie reviews are fantastic! You should totally put Mr. Movie out of business!

Mitchellaus Copernicus said...

Pop 'n lock. Leesh, you have me dying here. That was ghettofabulous. I can picture you with yer bum out shakin' it downtown will Will.I.Am Leppert in tow. Beautiful. And I am only commenting to make you happy. Can't promise I'll vocalize my pleasure over your blog again.

Alicia said...

Mitch, it must have been a good post for you to comment. I feel so privelaged. But what's this about not doing it again? Why you hatin'?

Em and Ms said...

Great review! I need to watch this again. We saw it on Disney when it came out, but we watched it with Michael Rawlins and he just made it seem cheesy :) FYI--most of the movie was actually filmed in St. George. The country club scenes all were. It's beautiful there!

Alicia said...

I thought of that Emily! I was pretty sure it was filmed in Utah, but they made me long for New Mexico, none-the-less.
I can't imagine watching either HSM with Michael, that would be horrible!

Melissa Mae Johnson said...

At last, an adult that won't make fun of me for liking those movies! Oh, to be in a Disney musical!

Lisa said...

High School Musical is big at our house too. Didn't they film it in St. George??