It was the weirdest thing. I loved this movie, except when I was actually thinking about. It was like I had to detach my brain and let the movie go straight to my emotions.
The EMOTIONAL review:
First of course: The FUCKING MUSIC! The Abba music is absolutely irresistable, and most of the songs are more or less the original arrangements, even if various words and pronouns are changed. It was actually hard not to sing most of the way through the movie.
The visuals: I want to go to Greece. Immediately. Like now. I want to be on an Island with beautiful blonde people singing Abba songs in some of the most gorgeous color and cinematography I have ever seen.
I haven't loved Meryl Streep this much since Out of Africa. It was so great to just see her give herself up to the music and when she was singing "The Winner Takes IT All" with the mountains and the lights and the Ocean and the scarf, I was absolutely mesmerized.
Just happy, happy, happy all around, and it is nice to see a movie where you know that nothing bad can happen to anybody and everyone will end up happily ever after.
As for Pierce Brosnan-AWWWWWWWWW!!!!
I did so much squeeeing when the guys came out in the costumes for the end sing-a-long.
The BRAIN review:
When the hell is this movie supposed to be taking place? If it's the present day, then she was pregnant in 1988. And her mother told her not to come home? In 1988? And she listened to her? In 1988. Even if it were ten years earlier, and she was pregnant in 1978, still not exactly The Scarlet Letter, you know?
And in what time and place would she have had the opportunity to sleep with hippie guy, punk guy and metal-guy within a few weeks?
Pierce Brosnan's singing generally wasn't that bad, but it was that bad in SOS, which is the first thing we hear him sing. If he got better afterwards, they should have let him re-record that one, because it sort of cast a pall over his whole performance. He was very good in When All Is Said and Done and his acting was pretty good, although seeing his gut was slightly disturbing. There seems to be a rule that the minute an actor stops playing Bond, he totally lets himself go.
Thank god he didn't have to sing any of The Winner Takes it All, because that would have been a disaster.
Was there ever any doubt from the beginning of the movie that the "spontaneous adventurer" was going to get together with the short "lone wolf" in spite of the fact Julie Walters seemed to be
playing her as a lesbian until she suddenly had to embarrass herself by crawling around singing Take A Chance On Me. I also felt a little bad for Christine Baranski doing the cougar thing, but at least she had the younger man pursuing her.
I was surprised she didn't get together with Colin Firth, although in the big "confession" scene I did sort of see where HIS character was going.
I think he most annoying thing that my brain insisted on noticing was that the whole plot is contingent on people being idiots right up until they need to stop being idiots for the plot to move forward. I know this is true of almost all musicals and comedies and musical comedies, but the structure of this thing made it completely egregious.
Mostly I let my emotions enjoy it, but my brain told me how lucky I was that I went with Big Frank from the Mint and NOT with Hubby. He doesn't like ABBA. He would have HATED it.
ETA-Two more "brain things" that ocurred to me last night.
1. This whole thing can be easily resolved with a DNA test.
2. If it is supposed to be "now" and she was having unprotected sex in 1988, then she really was a "stupid slut." At least stupid.