I am not a huge fan of musicals. I am not a huge fan of Abba either. However, I was in for a sweet surprise as I started watching Mamma Mia, a titillating musical solely featuring songs by Abba.
Theater adaptation of the famous Broadway show, Mamma Mia! is set against the backdrops of an idyllic Greek island where young Sophie (Amanda Seyfried) lives with her mother Donna (Meryl Streep). Donna runs a local hotel, and 20 years earlier, she had flings with three separate men, one of whom is Sophie's father. Without telling her mother, Sophie invites all three of them - Sam (Pierce Brosnan), Harry (Colin Firth), and Bill (Stellan Skarsgard) - to her pending wedding in hopes of finally discovering who her father really is.
Also visiting the island are Donna's two best friends, Tanya (Christine Baranski) and Rosie (Julie Walters); together, the three of them engage in a lot of obnoxious, borderline-slapstick goofing around that constituted my least favorite part of the movie. Needless to say, romantic complications ensue as it becomes obvious that at least one of the men still harbors romantic feelings for Donna.
All in all Mamma Mia! Is a fun escape from the endless spree of slapdash cop thrillers (read: Righteous Kill). Chief among the film's pleasures is Meryl Streep as Donna. As Donna, she presents a woman who has lived the life she's wanted, and while she may reconsider some of her choices she's not eaten up by any regrets. The role's not glamorous in the sense that she gets to wear gorgeous costumes or dance on beautiful sets. No, this is more like a come as you are musical with dances done in the rundown hotel and Streep wearing overalls for a good chunk of the film. But it's that casualness that adds to the fun and keeps all pretension at bay.