Some of the changes made from the screen to the stage to the screen were a bit disappointing (no beatniks, et al), but that's not a complete dealbreaker. The song and dance numbers make up for it. Like the original, the casting is quite notable, except there's only one real obvious bit of stunt casting. That's little bit is actually pretty crucial though. From the beginning it's been a tradition to have a man in drag play Edna. I'm cool with that, and, while John Travolta is a scream to watch in the role, it feels a little forced. Maybe it's because he's straight? He's not bad though, but it does seem a bit jarring.
Michelle Pfeiffer is great as the villainous Velma, Amanda Bynes shows off her trademark spunk with flair (and awesome hair to boot), Queen Latifah is probably the only person who could play Motormouth Maybelle so wonderfully (in this day and age), but for me (and many, I'm sure), the real shining star here is Nikki Blonksy. She's wonderful here in a breakout performance as the pleasant plump Tracy Turnblad who has huge hair, loves to dance, and becomes a champion for integration. I know she's done a bit more work since this film, but she deserves even more.
This is a really fun movie, and, while it isn't quite as campy as the original film, it's still just an absolute joy to watch. One moment that really made me laugh out loud is the Mrs. Pingleton (Allison Janney) reaction shot to the conclusion of the Penny/Seaweed story line. It's frickin' priceless.
This probably wasn't the most necessary film in the world, but, like I said, the music and dancing are well done, and it might be a little more accessible for audiences who can't groove on the trademark Waters campiness.
its one of my favourite musicles ive seen, its funny and so entertaining with really catchy songs as well!
im still in shock at how and why john travolta is playing the mum lol :)
it is completelly worth the watch as it really is likely to cheer you up!
it also covers some of the most controversal debate of that year and i think this movie portrays it very well!1
really worth a watch!
I didn't really knew Shankman's work until now, but I think he did a great job (for direction and choregraphies) and that we owe him a lot for what the new version of Hairspray is.
I haven't enjoyed myself like this with a movie this year.
Starring: John Travolta, Michelle Pfeiffer, Christopher Walken, Nikki Blonsky.
<< "I think I've kind of been in a bubble...thinking that fairness was gonna just happen. It's not. People like me are gonna have to get up off their fathers' laps and go out and fight for it." >>
This review will not compare to the original Hairspray, as I have not seen it.
I honestly didn't know what to expect, I had heard many excellent reviews and I thought it would be more along the lines of Dreamgirls where it is no story and all glamor...its much more then that.
Adam Shankman has created an really great piece of entertainment...the director of the atrocious 'The Pacifier', I never saw it coming, he has just shown he is worth something when he is in his comfort zone. He choreographed each dance sequence professionally and injected his direction with a whole lot of fun. The pacing is fast, exhilarating and full of life and when the entire production gets behind him and has fun too, he has certainly impressed me and critics.
The screenplay by Leslie Dixon is really great, with some amazing songs written by Marc Shaiman, I'll admit that it is light fluffy material overall, but there is a real topic underneath it all that they tackle. As it is also a great throwback to the 60's and full of so much life, the controversial topic of race and discrimination is covered without offending anyone nor becoming to controversial...and although this has been done many times before, it is handled right here and it shows us that we are not different because of of our skin color, or even our size, it hands us this nicely without force.
The acting ensemble is large and full of large talent and performances, John Travolta tackles a difficult role and does so brilliantly and with great style and control, he proves he still has it when he is in the right role. I could go on with the amazing cast (especially the young cast who outshine the adults) but the one I want to mention is newcomer, Nikki Blonsky, who shows great attitude and flair in her first role.
Amazing set design, brilliant costume designs, exhilarating dance sequences, I could go on, but to finish up, the film surprised me. Exhilarating, hilarious, sharp, witty, fast-paced, dazzling...its so much fun, it keeps in mind everything a summer film should be, to entertain and have fun while your doing it. My theater clapped and I can see why.
<< "Child, yesterday is history, and it's never coming back! Cause tomorrow is a brand new day, and it don't know white from black! Cause the world keeps spinnin' round and round, and my heart's keepin' time to the speed of sound...I was lost till I heard the drums and I found my way, cause you can't stop the beat!" >>
Adam Shankman's adaptation of the stage musical Hairspray, itself an adaptation of the non-musical John Waters film of the same name, stars Nikki Blonsky as Tracy Turnblad, an overweight high-school student whose only dream is to be on a local Baltimore teen dance program. While her father (Christopher Walken) tells her to follow her dreams, her mother Edna (John Travolta in drag) reminds her that she doesn't look like the girls on that show. After impressing the show's host (James Marsden), Tracy earns a coveted spot on the program, but when she becomes a popular addition to the cast, she earns the wrath of the prettiest girl in school -- a girl whose mother (Michelle Pfeiffer) just happens to operate the local television station. Tracy's visit to detention hall opens her eyes to the racial tension on the show, as does the budding relationship between her best friend (Amanda Bynes) and an African-American boy named Seaweed (Elijah Kelley). Thus empowered, Tracy attempts to integrate the races on her favorite program.
Oh, how I hate musicals. People bursting into song and dancing on tables for no apparent reason. Hairspray is a musical with people bursting into song and dancing on tables. Ergo, I should hate this movie.
But I didn't. I though it was very charming and entertaining. Above all I have to "blame" Nikki Blonsky for tricking me into enjoying a musical. She's very talented and just a bundle of energy. But I have to say that the cast overall was extremely good. So what if some of them can't sing. They deliver with such energy that it's just impossible not to like this movie. The ones in the cast who really stood out for me (except for Blonsky) were Michelle Pfeiffer (deliciously evil) and James Marsden (he was born to play this part). I was pleasantly surprised.