The Prom

The Prom

Released: December 4, 2020
Watched: January 24, 2021

“‘Straight people like Broadway too.’
‘I’ve heard that. Always thought it was a fairy tale.'”

I’m not sure if I would say The Prom is good, but it is an fun escapist feel-good movie.

It might not be for me, but these kind of stories still deserve to be told. There are people who will find catharsis in seeing the inclusive prom at the climax of the movie.

Unfortunately, the songs weren’t memorable. (Except maybe “Just Breathe” and “We Look to You.”) Not sure if I want/need to see this on Broadway — it feels like it’d be more successful as smaller and community productions.

Everyone looked like they had a blast making the movie. I really enjoyed watching Meryl Streep/Keegan-Michael Key. I remember when the movie came out, people were pretty divided on James Cordon playing a gay character. While I support those (valid) criticisms and would love to see how an gay actor approach this character, I thought Cordon did fine — he won me over with his vulnerable moment in the hotel room.

The corny sappiness is laid on pretty thick for my tastes, but I was amused by the celebrities’ meta-awareness and self-indulgence. You know those overly-PR, not always successful stunts that some celebrities like to do when they fuck up,? It’s very much that.

That being said, I was browsing IMDB facts for this movie and came across this gem:

“Although the original actors from Broadway auditioned for the role, Ryan Murphy decided to go with the “star-filled” cast. This is sadly ironic, as the stage version was designed to give leads to actors who had spent their entire career in supporting roles, such as Beth Leavel, Brooks Ashmanskas, Angie Schworer and Christopher Sieber, whose roles in the film are played by Streep, Corden, Kidman and Rannells, respectively.”

Reading this left a bitter taste in my mouth — while I see why Netflix/Ryan Murphy might have chose bigger stars in order to increase viewership and I did enjoy the cast, it feels like a misstep in not honoring the original intent of the stage version and a missed opportunity to introduce mainstream audiences to less-known actors.


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