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The Ultimate Movie Musicals Bracket - Round Two, Day Three
Sing a happy working song!
Hey, folks! The weekend has mercifully arrived (if only it was here as I typed these words days before), and with it, more matchups in the second round of the Ultimate Movie Musicals Bracket. No time for chit-chat — let’s go!
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(2) Mary Poppins vs. (31) Pitch Perfect: Anna Kendrick is very talented and lovely, and I do like the first Pitch Perfect more than its sequels. But…it’s Julie Andrews and Mary Poppins. I have no qualms about voting for the practically perfect nanny. How about you?
(15) South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut vs. (18) Purple Rain: Brian Boitano might vote for Prince. And so may you. But I’m going with the gleeful vulgarity of the 1999 South Park movie, which was the first of many times that Trey Parker and Matt Stone revealed their great love of bombastic Broadway shows.
South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut
(7) Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story vs. (26) Enchanted: Leaving aside the reaction some of you may have to the notion of whether or not Walk Hard is a musical (again, I say it is), here is why I am indeed voting for Dewey Cox this time around. While I enjoy both of these movies, a) I do like Walk Hard more and b) more crucially, one of the major emotional climaxes of Enchanted occurs through a song that is…primarily not performed by our main characters. (Off the top of my head, I forget if the person singing “So Close” appears on screen as a singer at the big ball where Giselle and Robert are dancing, so I can’t say for certain it’s performed entirely on the soundtrack.)
I have written before about how much I love Amy Adams, James Marsden, and Timothy Spall in Enchanted, but while Adams alone does so much heavy lifting with the comedy and songs, the end of the movie relies on music but does so in a way that I find a bit flat. Anyway, I’m a realist: I wager Enchanted wins here, but I still prefer the wrong kid having died instead. What do you say?
Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story
(10) West Side Story (1961) vs. (23) Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory: Man, this is a toughie. In some ways, it’s not tough at all, because I know what should win — that would be West Side Story, which is a remarkably exuberant film adaptation, even if I prefer the 2021 remake. Willy Wonka has a couple of memorable songs, but also a turgid one like “Cheer Up, Charlie”, and no one is ever going to say its choreography could top that of Jerome Robbins. But nostalgia is nostalgia. This might be close!
West Side Story (1961)
Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory