Music has always been present in our lives – and when it joins the cinema, magic is created.
Since the transition from silent to talking cinema, filmmakers around the world have shown an invaluable appreciation for musical narratives, finding a very interesting way to unite theater and sound in a unique experience that thrills audiences to this day.
From the classic “The Wizard of Oz”, which immortalized Judy Garland as Dorothy, to “In a New York City neighborhood”, which helped establish Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hugely successful career in the mainstream screenplay. . , the titles of the musicals which accompany us in the life are innumerable.
With this in mind, CinePOP has put together a very short list of five productions of the genre that you absolutely must check out on HBO Max.
Check out our picks below and let us know which one is your favorite:
The Wizard of Oz (1939)
Even after nearly ninety years since its official release, people continue to rediscover the undeniable magic of “The Wizard of Oz”. The feature film, directed by Victor Fleming, helped harness the importance of cinema as a medium and revolutionized the aesthetic-narrative process of the seventh art.
The plot, set in Kansas, follows Dorothy (Judy Garland), a young girl who lives on a farm with her aunt and uncle. When a tornado hits the region, it takes refuge inside. The girl and her dog are swept away by the cyclone and land in the Land of Oz, tripping over the Wicked Witch of the East and killing her. Dorothy is considered a hero, but what she wants is to go back to Kansas. For this you will need the help of the mighty Wizard of Oz who lives in the Emerald City. Along the way, she will be threatened by the Wicked Witch of the West (Margaret Hamilton), who accuses Dorothy of her sister’s death, and she will meet three companions: a scarecrow (Ray Bolger) who wants a brain, an iron man (Jack Haley) who thirsts for a heart and a cowardly Lion (Bert Lahr) who needs courage. Can The Wizard of Oz help them all?
THE FANTASTIC CHOCOLATE FACTORY (1971)
Before Johnny Depp played iconic chocolatier Willy Wonka, Gene Wilder made history with the first adaptation of the classic children’s novel Charlie and the Roald Dahl Chocolate Factory. Surprisingly, the film was not a huge success when it was released, becoming a cult classic decades later and being selected for preservation in the United States Library of Congress.
The story centers on Charlie Bucket (Peter Ostrum), a poor boy who finds one of the coveted “golden tickets” which entitles him to a lifetime delivery of Wonka chocolates, as well as the chance to visit the mysterious eponymous chocolate factory. He and four other children roam the premises, but Willy Wonka (Wilder), the owner of the factory, is not a nice person but a manipulative figure. Children, by plunging headlong into their desires, pay the price.
Few musical films have succeeded in overcoming the impact caused by ‘Chicago’. Based on the 1975 play of the same name, the story explores themes such as fame, scandals, corruption and gender disparities and involves actors such as Renée Zellweger, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Richard Gere and Queen Latifah – in addition to having won no less than six statuettes. Oscars, including that for best film.
In the plot, nightclub sensation Velma (Zeta-Jones) murders her flirtatious husband. So Billy Flyn (Gere), Chicago’s smartest lawyer, is chosen to defend her. Roxie singer Roxie (Zellweger) also ends up in jail for killing her boyfriend, and Billy takes her case as well, turning everything into a media circus. Now they are vying for the height of fame.
Against all odds, the third remake and fourth iteration of “A Star Is Born”, released in 2018, became one of the most acclaimed films of the past decade and saw the legendary Lady Gaga establish herself as an actress. to fear – with the iconic Bradley Cooper. Earning eight Oscar nominations, the film took home the award for Best Original Song for the acclaimed track “Shallow”.
The plot revolves around Jackson Maine (Cooper), a singer at the height of fame. One day, after leaving a concert, he stops in a bar for a drink. There, Jackson meets Ally (Gaga), a precarious singer who makes a living working in a restaurant. He falls in love with her and her talent. Later, the two end up getting married. As Ally becomes a star, Jackson goes through a personal and professional crisis due to alcohol problems. The opposing moments end up damaging the romantic relationship of the couple.
After dominating the world with the film version of ‘Hamilton’, Lin-Manuel Miranda was ready to bring another of his acclaimed musical pieces to the big screen – and, in this way, he allied himself with Jon M. Chu ( ‘Crazy Rich’) to adapt ‘In a New York City’.
Starring names like Anthony Ramos and Melissa Barrera, the feature film tells the story of a neighborhood of Latin American communities in New York City known as Washington Heights. In these busy streets, everything always happens with a lot of music and all the anguish inherent in youth. From the protagonist Usnavi (Ramos), owner of a local grocery store, the story portrays a group of young people in search of their dreams and a better life, in addition to all the experiences and expectations of this intense period of life. . , in bustling New York City.
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