That's what 'Mamma Mia!' was like for me. Of course, I knew the movie existed; everyone knew. And I saw the ending on TV a couple of times. But I never really took the time to watch the whole thing. So, one day I had some free time and decided to download a movie. I went through some websites offering promising movie, but I still couldn't find anything good. Finally, I turned to Wikipedia to search a movie via a particular actor. I came across Meryl Streep's page and scrolled down to her filmography. That's pretty much how I came to download 'Mamma Mia!'.
So, after it got set on my computer, I click "play" and without expectations or prejudices I sit back and watch.
From the very first scenes, I knew I'd like this movie. Just the whole tone of it; light, fun, bubbly. I'm a big fan of serious dramas, but a good comedy/musical is welcome once in a while. We can't be serious our entire lives, right?
The movie owes its greatness to different factors:
1. The music.
ABBA's music has been legendary since forever. And the way the cast performes the songs is a great tribute to them. I know many people who becam ABBA-fans after seeing 'Mamma Mia!' and I'm 100% one of them! They're not immensley deep or philosophical, but they're so catchy and fun to sing along. Like I said: sometimes we need a little shallow fun :)
2. Meryl Streep.
The whole cast did a good job, but Meryl's performance defined this movie for me. I know she's not a professional singer, but I love hearing her voice. I loved all her performances in this movie. She's so ridiculously silly! She only cared about delivering the part, not about vanity. It's basically scientific fact that she's one of Hollywood's finest actresses and the fact that she can let loose and be goofy for once makes her twice the actress she already was. She's so likeable in this movie! It's really in the little things she does. The way she sings "blue since the day we parted" or her little gestures at the beginning of "Money, money, money". I always notice those things in actresses. It puts something personal in the character and that's what makes every actor unique. The performance Streep gave during "The winner takes it all" was incredible. The way she sang that song with all the emotion... And to think that she managed to do that in one, I repeat, one take! Wow, she really is amazing! This movie has put Meryl Streep on the third spot on my list of favorite actresses. I'll do a complete article on her someday.
3. The feel-good effect.
Someone on IMDB said it best: this movie is the best cure against depression. So true. This movie will, without a doubt, bring a smile to your face. I remember when I watched it that first time, how an instant smile was stuck on my face during "Dancing queen". It's just such a nutty, hilarious performance! At the end of the movie, I felt happy and carefree; it's great when a movie does that. After that first viewing, I kept watching it over and over again. Actually, I think I'm going to watch it again right after posting this :)
In short, 'Mamma Mia!' is a great movie. Guarenteed laughter and amusement! It doesn't have great depth and it doesn't make you think. But it does have an impact; it will leave you with a smile for days!
Michelle was considered for the part of Donna. This post is starting to get long, so I'll forward my thoughts on that in some other post.