So I just saw this amazing movie this afternoon, and I don’t even know where to begin. I don’t think there are enough words in the English language to fangirl over this movie, but I’m going to trying and think of as many as I can because…WOW.
My first round of praising goes to Lily James. Some may know her as Lady Rose MacClare on Downton Abbey, or Natasha Rostova War & Peace, or even Elizabeth Bennet in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. For me, I feel in love with her immediately as Cinderella in the 2015 version of Cinderella.
The casting of Lily and Young Donna Sheridan is absolutely spot on. Having to live up to an icon like Meryl Streep I can only imagine as being very daunting. Her performance in the first Mamma Mia was legendary, and I think is one of the greatest performances in cinematic history. But Lily pulled it off brilliantly. Not only does she look like a young Meryl, but even her voice matched the style and way Meryl sings. Any time she opened her mouth to sing, I got the biggest smile on my face because I knew I was going to watch a fantastic scene. Her performance in this movie, along with her on screen presence, for me, has already cemented her as movie musical icon. Her chemistry with all three of her love interests was some of the best I’ve seen when it comes to love triangles. Most movies make them dramatic and unpleasant, not Mamma Mia. They managed to make it work, and have all three guys end up being friends in the end because they all loved Donna.
I can’t talk about Donna without talking about Sophie herself, Amanda Seyfried. It’s been 10 years since the world saw her as Sophie, and when I heard the news they were making this movie, I flipped out. I absolutely loved Sophie because it reminded me of how I was when I was 20, minus being engaged.
I think my favorite part about Sophie in this movie is that you could tell she was a lot wiser, and had grown up a lot since the last movie, due to the fact Donna (SPOILER ALERT!!) had sadly passed away. She was now running the new refurbished Bella Donna. As the movie goes on, you get some very sweet moments between Sophie and Tonya and Rosie, as well as Sophie and Sam/Harry/Bill. During “Dancing Queen” when Sky comes back to surprises her for the grand re-opening of the hotel made my heart so warm because even though they had a fight in a previous scene, they still loved each other regardless of what happened.
Right off the bat, the movie starts off with a flashback and one of my favorite songs on the entire soundtrack. “I Kissed The Teacher” has to be one of the catchiest songs I’ve ever heard in my life. I can’t be in a bad mood when I listen to it. And if you are ever in a bad mood, just blast this song; I can guarantee you will be smiling and dancing before it finishes. What I also love about the music of this movie is that each song seamlessly flows into the next, with no bumps in the road. We got some of the classics revisited from the first movie in new ways, as well as some songs.
This movies new songs had me sobbing, which I did not expect to happen. The song “I’ve Been Waiting For You” was absolutely beautiful. What I love about this song is that not only was paying tribute to her mom by performing with Tanya and Rosie at the party, she was also singing to (SPOILER ALERT!!) her soon to be baby, hoping she will be as good as a mom as her own. “My Love, My Life” got my waterworks flowing. This song was just an ode to a beautiful mother/daughter relationship and how they will never break, no matter what happens. The final verse had me full on crying; seeing Sophie and Donna singing one last duet together was beautiful. And seeing ALL generations of the characters singing “Super Trouper” together was the cherry on top of this perfect movie.
Before 5th Harmony. Before Little Mix. Even before The Spice Girls, there was Donna and The Dynamos: the original Girl Power Band. Who they cast to play Young Tanya and Young Rosie were absolutely stunning. The chemistry all three of the young Dynamos shared on screen, you could feel it in your seat as you watch. I love when the casting department for movie nails who they choose because Lily, Alexa Davies and Jessica Keenan Wynn look exactly like Meryl, Julie Walters and Christine Baranski. Add their fantastic voices and comedic timing, you have the recipe for dynamic characters everyone will love.
Let me tell you, when I had a FEELS trip with this movie, I had a roller coaster ride of emotion. But that’s the best part when watching this movie. You’ll go from chuckling, to belly laughing your butt off, to tearing up, to crying, to full on belly laughing by the end because of how great the end credits are. Movie that do that, but also manage to make you feel happy the rest of the day are the movies that are worth going back to see again and again.
Cher. That’s all I have to say. Cher was the performance in the movie I did not need more of in my life. She is such a powerhouse Queen in this role, I couldn’t help but sing-a-long to her song “Fernando” while watching, even though I shouldn’t have. IF, and that’s a big IF, a Mamma Mia 3 is made, I hope her character comes back. I want to see (SPOILER ALERT!!) How she does as a “great-grandmother” to Sophie’s son, Donny, who was named after Donna.
Speaking of Mamma Mia 3, I need a duet between Sophie and Young Donna. I can just picture how brilliant and breathtaking that scene will be; I also just need Amanda and Lily to sing together because two fierce icons singing together, would be a precious gift to this world. Sophie could be reminiscing by trying on one of Donna’s old overalls, then BOOM! There’s a flash of light, and Sophie is transported back to the 70s where she ends up befriending her mom. It would be a musical “Back to the Future”, and that sounds like a good movie to me.
As for my thoughts: This movie is about as hot as the Summer weather outside, but in the best possible way. It’s a good movie to go see to treat yourself to a “Me Day”. It’s a good movie to see with a bunch of your best friends, and then go for a drive while blasting the soundtrack as you sing at the top of your lungs. It’s even a good movie for a fun family day. Young or old, this movie is for you. It will make you smile and dance, and just put you in the best mood. “Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again“, in my opinion, is one of the best movie musicals to ever exist. It’s also at the top of my list of favorite movies in cinematic history. And that is why I think it is the best movie of the Summer.