Sep 17, 2006
Annie (2014),,20483133_20883399,00.html

Musically, Annie is a disaster. The melodious original score by Charles Strouse and Martin Charnin gets the full-on Autotune pap treatment, which takes to these songs about as well as a lute to death metal. You won't ever hear a worse rendition of ''Easy Street'' than the one performed by Diaz and Cannivale?I promise. (The Sia-branded new songs feel much more at home.) One can only hope that Byrne, Diaz, and Cannavale had ''movie musical'' on their bucket lists and will never tarnish their talents in such a way again. Aside from an unintentional homage to Zoolander that is so tone-deaf it'll make you guffaw, Annie goes out of its way to make viewing it a hard-knock life...for us. D
Just saw into the woods. Hadn't seen the play before or known any of the songs but I thought it was a great date night movie for the Mrs. There wasn't any really standout performance but the Agony bit between the princes must have been one of the most memorable shooting days of the year. Anna Kendrick was her usual hot self. In general I thought they did well even though I know it won't be exactly the same as the play and that they had to change some things.

We have entered the age of “Event TV”. Fox is prepping to remake the cult classic film The Rocky Horror Picture Show in a two-hour musical event special. Kenny Ortega (Highschool Musical, Hocus Pocus) is set to direct the reboot alongside Gail Berman (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel) as executive producer. Lou Adler, who executive produced the original film, is also on board. Tentatively titled The Rocky Horror Picture Show Event, the special has a cast-contingent order at Fox.

My gut reaction to this is – wow, that’s going to be a disaster – but I’ll reserve judgment until a cast is announced. The fact that they’ve got Adler on board is promising, and Ortega certainly knows how to direct musical performances. Plus, this is the guy who gave us Newsies and Hocus Pocus, two of my generation’s great cult classic. If they nail the casting, it could turn out to be a damn entertaining program. It’s easy to rail against the idea of anyone but Tim Curry in the iconic role of Dr. Frank-N-Furter, but I’ve seen the role performed countless times by a number of actors who completely nailed it. And if you’re not already aware, Anthony Stewart Head delivered a killer Frank-N-Furter of his own. I suggest you google that if you haven’t seen it, because it’s excellent. I just hope they’re not leaning toward the young and so-hot-right-now direction they went with casting their upcoming Grease: Live, in which case they better wise up...

...Fox is also currently developing Grease: Live, which will air on January 31, 2016 with Julianne Hough set to play Sandy and Vanessa Hudgens as Rizzo. a huge bag'o'd_cks
So, I saw Spamelot at the Hollywood Bowl yesterday.

I will allow for the obvious (these are one off shows, and the cast was chosen perhaps with an eye on status rather than ability, there may have been alterations based on the venue) But... just wasn't my thing.
I grew up with Monty Python and all the head shaking and finger waggling from people who dismissed the guys as 'too foreign/strange'. Hell, the people behind us at the first screening of Meaning Of Life went to great trouble to express to the entire audience, their disgust and displeasure with what they were watching. When I was 9 ish, my Uncle described to me the Black Knight scene...and I had NEVER wanted to see anything so badly. More importantly, when I did, it lived up to (hell it exceeded) my expectations.
Anyway, sorry for the personal history...but it factors in. I tried to like Spamelot. I LOVE Craig Robinson. But it was a bad choice. He tries, but is just not equipped to pull it off. At one point I could see and hear Tim Curry(who also played Arthur) in the part, and it just made things worse. In fact, the casting on this is kinda stunty. You have Robinson/Christian Slater/the dude from Modern Family, mixed in with(judging by the program) these Broadway all stars. The whole thing came off a little High School musical. There were moments, Like Prince Herbert and the Castle AAArgh, or Tim and the killer rabbit(highlight of the show), but the whole thing came off as a bunch of off key fanboy recreations of Python's greatest hits wrapped in some really awful musical numbers. The WORST part was just how inoffensive the whole thing was. Python...sanitized for your appreciation. Although there were a few curious choices, including the Jew song and some really juvenile homophobic moments(which was doubly odd...when you factor in that the crowd was peppered with LGBT folks who ate the whole thing up).
I am glad I experienced it...but the bar was set too high by Book of Mormon(my first theater experience outside of some really oppressive Passion Plays from back in my Catholic School upbringing). BoM proved that you can appeal to everyone by not trying to appeal to ANYONE, and they did it with extremely well written and, more importantly, catchy songs.

OH, Warwick Davis stole the show. Maybe it was his authentic English accent, or just his professionalism and energy...but he really deserves special mention.

Special non Mention...the Lady of the Lake. The WORST of Broadway...overly SHOWY vocal gymnastics and shoehorned in moments that derailed the entire thing every 15 minutes or so. The performer was good...but the songs weren't.
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I wanted to see American Psycho the musical last year only because it was composed by Dunkin Sheik. The "barely breathing" one-hit wonder guy from the 90's and his interview on NPR was engaging; also the spinets of songs they teased sounded sooooo Joy Division.

Anybody catch it? Or better yet, buy the shirt?
Rita Moreno Opens Up About Her ‘West Side Story’ Role & Return to the Musical

Damn. From being part of my childhood with Electric Company to part of my adulthood as Sister Peter Marie on OZ, this amazing woman has had a career of six, possibly seven decades. It's truly beautiful. God bless, many more lady. Betty White is a poseur.
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