Thursday, April 15, 2010


"Buddha says, 'A child without courage is like a night without stars!'"

Sure, I'm a theatre major. Sure, I enjoy the occasional, OCCASIONAL, musical. But this! This is the best the 80's has to offer in terms of musicals! What crap! What utter crap! I somehow escaped this filmic version of Annie, as most of my professors prefer to show good musical adaptations such as The Sound of Music or My Fair Lady. But, of course, I felt the need to pay homage to this oft-lauded musical. Fifteen minutes in, I wanted to throw the DVD out of my second-story Pinehurst window. I fought the good fight however, and for the sake of this blog, I suffered.

Perhaps it is due to the fact that my bull-shit meter is very sensitive, or maybe it's just because this musical is dripping banality and trite philosophy, but I had a hard time stomaching the through-line of this film. Granted, we all love to see little orphan Annie struggle to usurp her horrid circumstances and to finally end up in the arms of Daddy Warbucks (played by Albert Finney, you know the cigar-smoking, tommy-gun weilding, bad-ass from Miller's Crossing). But this film believes far too much in sunshine and daisies to warrant anything more than a facile, glossy view of our modern, and their 80's, times. Perhaps, people in the 80's needed a little more sunshine in their lives and a little more hope, but this was certainly not the way to go about it.

On another note entirely, Albert Finney, Tim Curry, Carol Burnett, and Bernadette Peters (the latter three having solid Broadway careers, as well) turn out impeccable performances. It is odd to see these three performers finding nuance and subtlety in a script that is devoid of complication and intrigue. These performances make the musical stomach-worthy at points, but once little Annie opens her's all over. Perhaps I am being unduly harsh, but the 80's turned out some of the greatest films of all time, this is one of those exceptions. What a waste of talent...

Warning: Small children singing in falsetto and dancing *shudder*

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