Music Movies: The Five Biggest Flops And Five Biggest Successes
Welcome to a new recurring feature on RFT Music. In the next few weeks, we'll be taking a look at the best music movies, from documentaries (Dig!) to movies with earth-shattering soundtracks (Trainspotting) to the most consistently watchable movie musicals (Funny Girl). This week, we're starting with a round-up of both our favorite and least-favorite music movies. Sure, there are some embarrassing moments here, and there's a considerable wealth of gems as well, but there are far more of both out there than we can name. Add your own nominees in the comments. There are enough good (and terrible) memories to go around.
This is the face that launched 1,000 falsettos -- and also our No. 2 entry in the hits category.
Music movie flops:
Nick Cannon is the Aaron Carter of his film generation. Looking at his filmography list online, the most recent movie to his credit is one entitled School Gyrls, in which he both plays a lunch lady and directs the entire Nickelodeon extravaganza. The jury is still out on whether this sounds better or worse than his efforts in Drumline, a movie in which he is rude to basically everyone, usurps his superiors and somehow still manages to land an upperclassman played by the incomparable Zoe Saldana. (Keep reading to see how his real-life love fares on our list.)
4. Josie and The Pussycats
I'm imagining the origin story went something like this: "Hey, it's 2001. It's the perfect time to rehash those comics from the '60s and that animated series from the '70s about a slightly sexist female band dressed as cats." "Dude, you're so right. Let's update it, though: It's the new millennium, so there should definitely be a plot about a government conspiracy carried out through subliminal messages, and let's put Parkey Posey in it." "Perfect. And Tara Reid can be the ditzy cat. You know, the one that plays the drums."
3. Glee 3D
Rolling Stone's Peter Travers wrote the most succinct (though nowhere near the meanest) recap of this recent box-office failure: "The movie plays like an evangelical prayer meeting, though I'd hold the hallelujahs. The characters we came to admire as vulnerable misfits hit the stage like visiting royalty and with a nonstop perkiness that makes the Von Trapps look like manic-depressives." With the rise of 3D culture, the last thing we need to see projected trickily close to our faces is a mix of The Sound of Music and the sound of your last confession.
2. From Justin to Kelly
Who thought this was a good idea? The fact that we had to Google Justin's last name (Guarini) during the research for this post is as good a sign as any that the sloppy, chemistry-less mockumentary about the two American Idol singers should have been a music video at better and a rejected film pitch at best. In a long line of possible options, this might be the single most embarrassing puzzle piece in the reality show's legacy.
This plot is as high as her vocal range is good -- or something like that.