A lot of the righteous condemnation aimed at movie-musicals conceals an unfortunate snobbery. Why does no one make a fuss when an adaptation of a book like Jane Eyre or Little Women opens? A novel is, if anything, much less suited to the demands of the stage. A movie, after all, is already a tale told through dialogue and action that lasts about two hours. A novel requires much more truncating and condensing. Adapting movies makes more sense. The hatred of movie-musicals is too often based on an ill-considered sense of superiority to the source material. A Broadway musical, the thinking goes, should be better than an Adam Sandler vehicle. With a well-rendered adaptation, it can be. In the end, it's not the source of the adaptation that's important, it's the execution. The Wedding Singer had a chance to be a better musical than the movie it was based on and failed. Legally Blonde doesn't have to.
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