Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Cinema Cycle - Pippin - A Musical Comedy

(Cardio Workout And Reviewing Movies At The Same Time)


DATE: 4/29/2014

FORMAT: LaserDisc

SYNOPSIS: A young prince struggles to find meaning in his life through a series of musical numbers while being manipulated by a chorus and muse.

CONCEPT IN RELATION TO THE VIEWER: Determining what is truly worth pursuing in life as opposed to striving for the expectations of others.  Contentment is more important than making a grandiose statement in life.

PROS AND CONS: First of all, this is a Broadway Musical that was filmed during a live performance in Ontario, Canada.  The story follows the semi-historical life of Pippin, who was the only son of King Charlemagne of France.  The work is billed as a musical comedy, although it would best be considered an adult musical comedy.  The original play was performed on Broadway and choreographed by Bob Fosse of Cabaret and All That Jazz fame.  If you know Fosse’s work, you know that there are a lot of sexual undertones in this work.

The star of the musical is Ben Vereen, who, as the Muse,  walks us through the life of Pippin and manipulates him along the way.  He is Fosse’s obvious foil and shows his stage acting chops to good effect in this work.

While this is an engaging musical and fun to watch, the music is not that memorable.  The scenes where Vereen and Chita Rivera shine are entertaining, but other than them, the acting is somewhat average. The production value is good, using a lot of camera angles and direction to put the viewer on stage with the actors.  A good example of how a well done stage play should work.

TIME RIDDEN: 1 hour 53 minutes



To read an overview of this project, check out the initial post for this series.

This film is a part of my LaserDisc Collection.

Clicking on the title will take you to the Internet Movie Database (IMDB) entry for this film. 

This film was viewed while exercising on my recumbent cycle.  A summary of my time spent working out on my journey through movie-land can be found on Strava.com.