Mamma Mia! ABBA Goes Mediterranean Again

Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again (2018) is a delightful sequel to the fine Mamma Mia—er, wait a minute.  Mamma Mia (of 2008) is not fine: it’s unspeakably insipid.  Here We Go Again is superior to it.  It is delightful.  With Oliver Parker as director, the moviemakers got this one right.

Kyle Smith, who loved the picture, nevertheless opined that most of the ABBA songs proffered here are “second-raters.”  I take exception.  “One of Us” and “My Love, My Life” second-raters?  The former is a jaunty, heartfelt, lyrically smart item, and the latter a very dulcet ballad.  Both are performed moderately well.  A madcap dance routine gives the pleasurable “Waterloo” a run for its money, and “The Name of the Game” is a dignified worthy.  Although Lily James has little charisma, musically the movie is formidable.

The cast is fun and, along with there being breathtaking locations, Here We Go Again is awash in dancers; and, boy, do we see this when the zippy “Dancing Queen” is revived from the first film. . . MM The Sequel is not gay, as one professional critic happily considers it.  It is simply fantastic (i.e. fantasy-filled) and weird.  However, there does arise a lot of off-screen pagan fornication between James’s Donna and several men (Amanda Seyfried, meet your mother, Lily James), so the moviemakers decided to dilute this with a final church christening of a newborn baby.  It happens during the singing of “My Love, My Life,” with its “God bless you” line.  God bless you, ABBA.

 

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