High School Musical 3: Senior Year (7/10)
by Tony Medley
Run time 100 minutes.
It speaks volumes about the
state of American films when two of the most entertaining films to be
released his fall are high school movies, stories about high school
students and aimed at the high school intellect. First, “Nick and Nora’s
Infinite Playlist,” and now this.
Super Albuquerque East High
athlete Troy Bolton (Zac Efron) is in love with sweetie Vanessa Hudgens
(Gabriella Montez). They are graduating. They are both in a school
musical. She’s been accepted at Stanford. He’s ticketed to play
basketball at the University of Arizona. They will be apart. Boo hoo.
There is a B love story,
too, between two black students, Chad Danforth (Corbin Blue) and Taylor
McKessie (Monique Coleman), just to make sure that this film appeals to
all colors. Then there are the twins, Sharpay (Ashley Tisdale) and Ryan
(Lucas Grabeel) and transfer student Tiara (Jemma McKenzie-Brown). The
girls are generally up to no good (but in a fun sort of way) and Ryan is
the show’s choreographer and dresses like an artiste. One thing that
they all have in common is that they can sing and dance. And how!
But East High is a place
out of some time warp from the 1950s where everyone is nice and friendly
and nobody makes fun of the way Ryan dresses or Sharpay acts or anything
else, for that matter. From what I’ve heard about today’s high schools,
a school like this is a fantasy. Everything’s just hunky-dory, except
for the fact that graduation is going to split up that old gang of mine.
But the people who don’t
particularly care about the verisimilitude of the story are
director/choreographer Danny Ortega and writer/creator Peter Barsocchini,
who have a franchise, and it’s singing and dancing, and they know how to
do it extremely well.
The songs are upbeat and
nice, although not Rodgers & Hammerstein, they are more entertaining
than much of what passes as music today, and the choreography is happy
and uplifting. There isn’t one special effect. There is no profanity, no
nudity, no gratuitous sex, no bad parents, no terrible teachers, no evil
people. You’re not going to this movie for the story or for any reason
other than the singing and dancing. This movie is filled with them, and
it is a lot of fun.