Movie Review: Mamma Mia!

Phyllida Lloyd’s film adaptation of her theatrical hit Mamma Mia! (B) is largely a joyful confection, taking its cues from the music catalogue of Swedish hitmakers ABBA to playfully chronicle how the plucky young female descendant of a 1979 “dancing queen” cavorting with three summer boyfriends on an exotic Greek isle endeavors to discover the identity of a dad to walk her down the wedding aisle. Central to the charm of the film is the relationship between Meryl Streep as the mom and Amanda Seyfried as her inquisitive offspring; each has a natural warmth and pleasant singing voice. Some of the supporting subplots and singers (ahem, Pierce Brosnan) are a bit atonal or adrift. The musical numbers are lovely and limber, and the locale adds enchantment to the affair, as if something vaguely mythological is afoot. It’s a rom com within a rom com with karaoke moments to punctuate every Big Emotion. It’s frisky, fun and recommended.

I've reviewed films for more than 20 years. Current movie reviews of new theatrical releases and direct-to-video or streaming films are added weekly to the Silver Screen Capture movie news site. Many capsule critiques originally appeared in expanded form in my syndicated Lights Camera Reaction column.

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Posted in 2008

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