Friday, January 20, 2006

High School Musical premiered on TV: January 20, 2006

Originally posted January 20, 2012.

Disney “struck platinum with High School Musical, a made-for-cable movie that was mega-popular on the Disney Channel before spawning a mega-popular soundtrack. Echoing Grease, the plot involves two students” EV who meet at a New Year’s Eve party while their families are on vacation at a ski lodge over winter break. “During a karaoke contest at the teen party, they discover their love for singing... and an interest in each other.” AZ However, Gabriella (Vanessa Hudgens) is a “shy transfer student who excels in math and science” WK and Troy (Zac Efron) is the captain of the basketball team. When they discover they go to the same high school, they try out for the lead parts in the high school musical “and challenge the status quo of their cliques in the process” HP as they “resist peer pressure and rivalry, inspiring others along the way not to ‘stick to the status quo’.” WK

“The movie’s soundtrack isn’t exactly challenging;” HP “the songs are typical Disney pop: on the bland side but also very well-crafted.” EV “It does feature a pretty engaging mix of music and empowering messages, most of which can be found in earnest ballads such as Start of Something New, When There Was Me and You, and Breaking Free. Meanwhile, We’re All in This Together sets lyrics like ‘Everyone is special in their own way/ We make each other strong’ to music inspired by ‘Hollaback Girl’s marching-band/cheerleader motif.” HP

“Among the standouts are Get’cha Head in the Game, which incorporates” EV “an urban pop melody” HP with “noises from a basketball game (squeaking sneakers, bouncing balls, whistles) to great effect.” EV There’s also “the fab tribute to 1970s piano-pop What I’ve Been Looking ForEV which “flirts with satire” HP because its “melody is so bright and the vocals so relentlessly cheery, it sounds like a parody of a show tune.” HP It is “sung by the theater kids who are threatened by these upstarts from other cliques invading their territory.” HP Similarly, the “big chorus” HP on “the old-school show-tuney Stick to the Status QuoEV “urges everyone to just ‘go with the flow’.” HP

“The music falters” EV when it “comes closer to sounding like the usual teen pop product issued by Disney, especially on I Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You and the Latin-flavored Bop to the Top.” HP “Still, the album has enough personality to set it apart from the status quo of the studio’s other releases” HP and can “get kids to bounce and sing along nicely.” EV


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