Let me make something totally clear, I have not seen this movie and have no intention of doing so. It looks terrible. The trailer, on the other hand, is amazing. Yep, any more than two minutes of this stuff would be unbearable but this little selection of promo clips is like a beautiful satire on the jukebox musical. I’m just going to imagine it’s not actually publicising a real film.
Walking on Sunshine is clearly a low rent version of Mama Mia! I mean, can you imagine such a thing? That film was awful. It was the worst kind of lazy film making. Not only did it string together some songs that already existed with the flimsiest of story lines but it didn’t even do that itself, lifting it wholesale from the stage show. They didn’t even cast people that could sing, IN A MUSICAL! Of course the film was a phenomenal success, especially here in the UK which frankly made me more embarrassed to be English than when Mr. Blobby got to number one in the music charts.
It is possible to build a good musical around someone else’s songs. Sunshine on Leith managed a better job than the aforementioned Abba movie but Moulin Rouge is the one that did it well. The performances in that film were both broadly comic and serious but they were aware of the pomposity of what they were doing and celebrated it. Secondly, none of the songs, from the likes of Elton John, Madonna and The Police, felt cheesy or shoehorned in.
Walking on Sunshine clearly has none of these concerns and it certainly doesn’t appear to be worried about originality either. It isn’t so much a case of ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’ as ‘it’s beyond repair but let’s keep using it until we can’t anymore’. It has its Mediterranean holiday location, its love triangle, its anguished twenty somethings and its big dance routines. It also has a playlist of classic 80s pop songs – The Power of Love, It Must Have Been Love, If I Could Turn Back Time, Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, all karaoked with heartfelt gusto. They’ve even got Wake Me Up Before You Go Go in there. It all looks fun, for a little while but they can’t be serious can they? It’s the bits where I think they’ll try to be that I couldn’t watch.
I thank the people who brought us a StreetDance and StreetDance 2 then, for this delicious slice of camp fun. It was a highly enjoyable one hundred and twenty four seconds but I think that is more than enough now.
Watch the trailer here: http://youtu.be/lTNMJh_mWR4