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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions- Page 2

SporkGoddess
Broadway Legend
joined:7/27/05
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#26
Posted: 4/18/17 at 12:56pm

I'm not saying that her video essay was great, but she made more coherent reasons to admit her in it than she did in the stage version marching band version.  In the movie, it's apparent that her GPA, LSAT score, and extracurricular activities are pretty much why the board admits her.  In the musical, some of the board only want to admit her because she's attractive.  They just say "For reasons of... multiculturalism!", which is a pretty funny moment in the movie that the musical also manages to ruin by taking out important context and rephrasing it in a way that doesn't really convey what it should (in the movie, they're bringing up that they've never had a fashion major before and it would promote diversity). Also, without an essay at all, her application would be considered incomplete and thrown out before it was even reviewed. The video essay isn't realistic, I agree, but it's more realistic than the lack of essay in general.  Then again, the musical expects us to believe that they would know when and where the admissions committee was meeting.  I just don't see why the marching band scene was necessary when they could have staged the video.

I also want to point out my annoyance at the character of Kate, who apparently walks around with the Harvard Law School admissions standards memorized. IMO, that's yet another thing that they took away from Elle, because in the movie she was the one to voluntarily meet with an academic advisor and find out the requirements herself.

 

Jimmy, what are you doing here in the middle of the night? It's almost 9 PM!
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DrFrasierCrane
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joined:4/17/17
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#27
Posted: 4/18/17 at 1:27pm

I'll admit, it's pretty much just a massive guilty pleasure for me. The book is pretty weak and the deviations from the movie are mostly odd/nonsensical (although I do like what they did with Emmett's character). With that said, the score is insanely catchy and certainly one of the stronger pop scores I've heard. By no means is it a perfect show, but coming back to the original cast recording always brightens up my day.  

"This reminds of a debate my brother and I were having about whether or not Stephen Sondheim is really light opera." -Frasier Crane
JennH
Broadway Star
joined:11/14/13
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#28
Posted: 4/18/17 at 1:35pm

^^^^Apart from the above which I def agree with, honestly....I hate it :/ I pretty much hate all the O'Keefe shows. I will say Heathers has it's place since it takes on an always relevant subject, but I very much dislike Legally Blonde, and I DETEST Batboy. But, I'm also aware the production of Batboy I saw was terrible, so that doesn't help. 

I just don't like musicals that have no business being musicals. What sense was there for LB to be a stage musical? I saw it in it's San Fran tryout back when, and it's a piece of fluff for sure, and I don't mind pieces of fluff but the movie was enough. I didn't see it as a "musical", I didn't know where the songs were until I saw it, the changes absolutely made no sense. It's always bothered me that they actually took her to the shower to make her point about permed hair...did that really need to be staged? Why couldn't it have just been the courtroom epiphany and be done with it? Among other things, but yeah...that was a time when everyone seemed to be turning movies into stage musicals that made no sense being musicals. cough*spiderman*cough. 

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Soaring29
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joined:12/14/14
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#29
Posted: 1/5/18 at 8:36pm

A lot of the songs are great: So Much Better, Legally Blonde Remix(a personal favorite), Legally Blonde, Ireland, Omigod You Guys, What You Want. But I think my main problem is that there are numbers that are just way too long, filled with too many people, and are not rooted enough in the book: instead they take it too far outside of the story and are filled with dumb gags that are just there for the sake of being gags.  

Owen22
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joined:2/24/11
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#30
Posted: 1/6/18 at 9:43am

London's Legally Blonde ran twice as long as Broadway's.  The reason being was Sheridan Smith.  She made the show a hit in a way Laura could not.  I liked Laura's performance, but I always maintained it needed someone to really make the Broadway Elle the equivalent of the film's Elle.  Through her extreme talent and charisma Reese Witherspoon made that film. She made that character float. She made her "sing".  Elle has to be something special, and as good as Laura Bell Bundy is, she is not very special (her career trajectory shows this).  She's a very talented Broadway performer. But that's all. What the show needed was Kristen Chenowith fifteen (maybe ten?) years earlier.  But London got that special Elle. Sheridan probably couldn't sing it as well as Laura, but she had the star quality that role needs. And even after she left the West End production, her value to the brand lasted and the show ran for quite a while after.

Sunny11
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joined:9/3/14
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#31
Posted: 1/6/18 at 10:19am

The West End production was also heavily cast with celebrities. The original Warner was Duncan James from Blue, a huge boy band at the time. Replacement cast members included actors from  soaps Emmerdale and Hollyoaks, popular presenter Denise Van Outen and Lee Mead who was the winner of a reality show to play Joseph in  joseph and the amazing technicolor dream coat.

The broadway production didn’t have that level of star power. I think that they overestimated how much of a draw Bailey Hanks would be after the reality show they did to find her to replace LBB and there wasn’t really another star in the cast to help  buoyant  it.

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darquegk
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joined:2/5/09
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#32
Posted: 1/6/18 at 2:07pm

Legally Blonde is a smartly constructed show: Elle Woods is one of the best modern musical roles for an "actress who sings." The dance numbers are constructed so that she has to be a good mover, but the rest of the ensemble are doing most of the choreographic heavy lifting, and the songs have a relatively moderate range but do exciting things within it. Your Elle only has to have one really big note (the end of "So Much Better"Legally Blonde Musical Opinions, but has to have great comedic chops and a good heart throughout.

The star Legally Blonde really needed was Kristen Bell: a gifted seriocomic performer with bombshell looks, some dance and a good voice that isn't necessarily Elphaba material. 

As a matter of fact, ages be damned, I'd love to see the entire "The Good Place" cast do this one, with Bell as Elle, Jameela Jamil as Vivian, Ted Danson as Callahan, William Jackson Harper as Emmett, Manny Jacinto as Kyle and D'Arcy Carden as Paulette. NBC, are you listening?

broadwaysfguy
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joined:5/27/14
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#33
Posted: 1/7/18 at 2:42pm
this show was good fun with a very underrated score
it was tough for lbb to fill reese’s shows in terms of star power and i would have liked to have seen the london production

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non-stop26
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#34
Posted: 1/7/18 at 3:02pm


As a matter of fact, ages be damned, I'd love to see the entire "The Good Place" cast do this one, with Bell as Elle, Jameela Jamil as Vivian, Ted Danson as Callahan, William Jackson Harper as Emmett, Manny Jacinto as Kyle and D'Arcy Carden as Paulette. NBC, are you listening?"

THIS

Maztuski
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joined:12/21/17
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#35
Posted: 1/7/18 at 7:20pm

but why on earth did it win the Olivier Award?

BroadwayNoob
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joined:9/24/17
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#36
Posted: 1/8/18 at 12:49am

At first it was literally my least favorite musical of all time. I thought songs were stupid and the plotline was extremely sexist. I gave it another chance though, and now it is kind of like a guilty pleasure. It isn't great, but they did a great job with the adaptation and the set and acting is extremely impressive. And now Christian Borle is my favorite actor 

Owen22
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joined:2/24/11
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#37
Posted: 1/8/18 at 10:07pm

Maztuski said: "but why on earth did it win the Olivier Award?"

Sheridan Smith.

 

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BlackElleWoods
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#38
Posted: 1/9/18 at 12:08am
OBVIOUSLY I love it !!!!!!!! One of my favorite shows . LBB is such an underrated talent in my opinion . One of my dream roles but unless this shows follows the lead of hamilton , GC , rent , etc. I don’t see it happening lol
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Mister Matt
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joined:5/17/03
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Legally Blonde Musical Opinions#39
Posted: 1/9/18 at 2:11pm

The West End production was also heavily cast with celebrities. The original Warner was Duncan James from Blue, a huge boy band at the time.

No to mention, Jill Halfpenny from Coronation Street and EastEnders, who also won an Olivier for her performance as Paulette.

I saw the original cast on Broadway and thought it was cute and fun.  I didn't think it was great, but I didn't think it was bad, either.  Laura Bell Bundy delivered a solid, yet unremarkable performance and the show seemed swallowed up by the Palace.  I did (and still do) think the show always had a solid score filled with catchy tunes that served the story well. 

I later saw the London production with Sheridan Smith and the difference was night and day.  The theatre was a better fit for the show and there were minor, yet effective, tweaks to the show that improved on its pacing.  Adding a star comedic performer then catapulted the show into the realms classic musical comedy.  Suddenly, everything about it worked.  Orfeh's brash take on Paulette was more outwardly funny than the meekly sweet performance of Jill Halfpenny, but the choice made sense in terms of balance.  In keeping Paulette at the same level of Jennifer Coolidge's original performance, adding to her material meant taking more focus away from Elle.  

"What can you expect from a bunch of seitan worshippers?" - Reginald Tresilian

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