Ok this one I know about. Saw the movie however long ago. It pops up in cable, I don’t turn the channel. I like Elle. And I like the messages to be found in this movie. Messages that aren’t found in other romantic comedies. Like, be an individual, be strong, be smart, don’t dumb yourself down for a man. And don’t give up something you want to do to stay home and make babies. I don’t know, I got three girls. Maybe I’m sensitive to this sort of thing.
Of course, if you know the story, you know that is Elle’s plan at first. She wants to go to Harvard Law, impress her ex so he thinks she is serious and will take her back. “Your IQ drops to 40 whenever you around him,” one character says. And it is true. She goes back to the stereotypical sorority girl. But she is intelligent and capable and comes to realize that. And learns that instead of being just a means to an end, the law can help people. She may not be serious but she is not less than anyone else.
I’m starting to sound like an echo but Neptune did one hell of a job here. They just keep raising the bar. The sets, the costumes (of which there are 144, I believe, not counting the dogs), the music. Just pure excellence across the board. Live music obviously has its challenges but the folks at Neptune pull it off wonderfully. The costuming looked awesome and Elle had all her pink. And I loved the way the sets slid on and off stage with ease, giving us just enough to set the scene. The choreography, well damn. Done by Chad McNamara who was one of the Doodlebops, I was happily impressed. I’m merely an observer here, knowing less then nothing about dance, but this was awesome. Lively and full of great moves. I would praise it further but I really don’t know enough to say anything but bloody well done. There must have been an insane amount of work and it paid off in spades.
They started rocking the joint right from the beginning with the Delta Nu girls and “Oh My God! Ohmigod You Guys!” Songs were sung, dances danced, the sets sliding back and forth with the actors. Everybody did a great job from Lindsay Frazier as perpetually pink Elle to David Cotton’s slightly clueless and jerkish Warner, the impetus for the whole story. Liz Gilroy, who I saw last in Elf, was funny and sweet as Paulette. And I’m not sure who got the biggest reaction from the audience, Graham Coffeng as Kyle the UPS man or Rufus the Bulldog. For me, the stand out was the Delta Nu girls, specifically as the Greek chorus once Elle had moved to Harvard. In a play filled with laugh out loud moments, they almost brought tears to my eyes. And the girls were right. They really did add to the show. I’m glad their roles were expanded. Another stand out was the court room scene, with the cast singing “Is He Gay or Is He European?” I want to buy it in iTunes. And the bend and snap? Again please.
The story seemed a little quick at times, things happening without a lot of development, but I think that’s the nature of the game. It cant be easy turning a movie into a musical. Things will have to change to make room for the song and dance. Some moments get stretched out, others speeded up. But overall, the story didn’t suffer and it does keep the running time down. They are really turning me into a theatre and musical fan at Neptune. I’ve come to expect excellence from them and they keep delivering. On April 11 they release the schedule for the upcoming season and I can’t wait. I will be there for as many shows as I can.
As for Legally Blonde? Go see it. Got a girl, take her. I think they recommend 12 and older. Some sexually related things. Its nothing major but that depends on you and your child. Make it a girls night out or a date night with hubby. He’ll enjoy himself. Obviously something about Elle Wood’s journey strikes a chord with viewers. The movie came out in 2001. The musical had million dollar weeks on Broadway. And now a standing ovation at our own Neptune Theatre. And well deserved. I laughed practically the entire time. Got mad at the appropriate times. Cheered on the heroine. And that’s knowing how the story goes. Legally Blonde isn’t in the genre i typically like, as some of you know! but I enjoyed the hell out of it. Its a good story told well, with wit and enthusiasm. And we can all stand a little pink in our life. Who knows, maybe next year we get The Expendables The Musical.