Let me tell you this right now; if you’re a fan of musicals you’re going to love this movie. Hands down, no matter what.
Not to say that Jersey Boys is the ‘traditional musical’ meaning there’s no random singing and dancing that pops up in the middle of dialogue. If you’ve heard of the film at all you’ll know that Jersey Boys is actually the story of how the popular 1960’s rock band The Four Season’s got their start from nobodies and petty crooks to fame and stardom. We have Frankie Valli, Tommy DeVito, Nick Massi and Bob Gaudio in that order they are played by John Lloyd Young (Law & Order, Glee, The Word Is Love), Vincent Piazza (Polish Bar, Yeah No Definitely, 3 Nights In the Desert), Michael Lomenda (True Blood), and Erich Bergen (Children’s Hospital, How Sweet It Is, Gossip Girl). Now starting the movie off is Tommy DeVito who shows up as sort of a narrator for the movie and I gotta say as the bad boy of the group, he was my favorite! Tommy informs us of how things work on their side of the tracks and introduces the star Frankie as someone he looks after, kinda took under his wing, shows the ropes. That whole thing. A friend is what he’s saying. The movies begging’s of how Frankie is the underdog that Tommy looks after and the gang’s few run in’s with the law are pretty entertaining. We also have Christopher Walken (30 Rock, Hairspray, Wedding Crashers, Stand Up Guys) who plays the lead mob man Gyp DeCarlo who runs the neighborhood; he adores Frankie’s voice and not wanting him to end up as some low life criminal encourages Frankie into the music business.
Tommy’s already got a little musical gang set up that performs once in a while at local clubs. Playing in his band on base is Nick and on the night that Tommy allows Frankie to show off that voice of his they know they’ve got something special. But the snowball doesn’t really pick up until they find Bob, a songwriter, who wants’ in on the gig.
From here on out we get the real story of the Jersey Boys…or at least the story from four separate perspectives because soon on we don’t just have Tommy narrating we have all of the Four Season’s telling us how it went down. I think having everyone narrate the story was a little bit unnecessary, I mean you only need one story teller right? But then again I guess it goes with the message Tommy gives early on, ‘Everybody remembers it how they need to.’ That being said every member of the Four Season’s had to give us their story.
Here’s a low point of the movie, John’s performance playing Frankie was kinda stale to me. The rest of the boys seemed to take the scene away from the main character and unless he was singing I barely noticed him at all. It was painfully obvious when Frankie gets the phone call about his daughter and has…pretty much no reaction to the news. His acting was just…bland I guess. Still though; phenomenal voice.
Another thing was that awkward ending. Out of the millions of ways to go to end the movie you go that way director Clint Eastwood? After a big music number just awkwardly standing in pose with no movement for seconds on end…? Okay you’re the big Hollywood director not me.
Jersey Boys was alot of fun. Plenty of moments that make you laugh and tons more that make you want to sing along. Like every rags to riches movie you’re gonna find your fair share of drama but it only drags you further into the movie.
Rotten Tomatoes gave this film a 55%. Eh. I’m telling you it was the acting.
Rated R for language.
There was this old guy sitting next to me, you could tell he was just thrown into a world of nostalgia, he was singing and clapping along all through the songs it was adorable! And I left the theater singing as well. I said it before and I’ll say it again: If you’re a fan of musicals you’re going to love this movie. P.S. I love musicals!