Review Roundup: First Critic Reviews of JERSEY BOYS Movie Are In!
The film adaptation of the Tony Award-winning musical Jersey Boys will hit theaters on June 20th. Directed by Clint Eastwood, JERSEY BOYS, written by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, features the music and lyrics of Bob Gaudio & Bob Crewe.
The film follows the story of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons: Frankie Valli, Bob Gaudio, Tommy DeVito and Nick Massi. It is about a group of blue-collar boys from the wrong side of the tracks who became one of the biggest American pop music sensations of all time. They wrote their own songs, invented their own sounds and sold 175 million records worldwide - all before they were thirty. The show features all their hits including "Sherry," "Big Girls Don't Cry," "Oh What A Night," "Walk Like A Man," "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" and "Working My Way Back To You."
Jersey Boys is the recipient of the 2006 Tony Award for Best Musical and the 2009 Olivier Award for Best Musical. The Original Broadway Cast Recording, produced by Bob Gaudio, received the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Musical Show Album and has been certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America(RIAA). The Broadway production also won the 2006 Outer Critics Circle & Drama League Awards for Best Musical. The London production also won the 2009 UK People¹s Choice and What¹s on Stage Awards for Best New Musical. The Toronto production won three Dora Awards, including the Audience Choice Award for Outstanding Production. The Australian production is 2010 recipient of the Helpmann Award for Australia¹s Best Musical and seven Victorian Green Room Awards.
Let's see what the critics had to day...
Andrew Barker, Variety: "Eastwood's filmmaking simply doesn't have the snap or the feel for rhythm that the script's rapid-fire theatrical patter requires, and the relative dearth of prominent musical performances turns what could have been a dancing-in-the-aisles romp into a bit of a slog. Eastwood's somber dramatic focus is on display from the start, as he opens not with a song, but rather a thoroughly Scorsesean scene inside a Belleville, N.J., barbershop in the 1950s."
Alonso Dualde, The Wrap: "If you're a fan of harmonic 1960s pop, or cars with fins, "Jersey Boys" will provide a nice evening out at the movies. It's nice. It's entertaining. It's pleasant. It's all the positive adjectives that mean 'not terrible, but ultimately negligible.'...There's an airlessness about "Jersey Boys," mainly in that Eastwood and the writers never seem particularly interested in reflecting the group against the context of their times. We never hear about the decade's controversies or newsworthy incidents, or the other groups competing against the Four Seasons for pop supremacy, or anything else outside of the bubble of their lives. As such, the movie never really makes a case for the Four Seasons being important enough to merit big-screen treatment in the first place."
Todd McCarthy, The Hollywood Reporter: "A dash of showbiz pizzazz has been lost but some welcome emotional depth has been gained in the big screen version of the still-thriving theatrical smash Jersey Boys....Jersey Boys may be a jukebox musical, but it's a jukebox musical with a good book as well as a raft of songs that remain as infectious as they were five decades back. "
Tim Grierson, Screen Daily: "But without the moral weight and melodramatic gravitas Eastwood usually brings to his films, Jersey Boysultimately doesn't seem to have much to say about The Four Seasons, the mid-century America that spawned them, or the burgeoning musical scene to which the band was connected. This is even more frustrating because the final scenes, though undoubtedly meant to be uplifting, provocatively (but subtly) undercut the feel-good tone in such a way that we're meant to wonder about the artifice of everything that came before. Over the last few decades, Eastwood has wilfully skewered and complicated our relationship with history. With Jersey Boys, he seems a little more forgiving, which isn't nearly as interesting."