“I am more interested in what my friends think of me than what I think of myself” is the powerful line delivered by Troy Bolton in the denouement of High School Musical 2, which I finally watched this morning. Is that really supposed to be inspiring?
HSM2, as it’s known to the true fans, could either be a film that lacks self-awareness or is so self-aware it’s all a joke on us. Watching it, I would think it’s a parody of all cheesy musicals. The extreme overacting (I’m looking at you, Corbin Bleu), the hackneyed plot, the horrible musical numbers, etc. I also feel like some of the staging was so bad, why didn’t they reshoot the scene? Sometimes I had to turn away, especially during Zac Efron’s tour-de-force “Bet On It” dance through the golf course.
I don’t like to go on things based on stereotypes, but this was also one of the gayest movies I’ve ever seen. How can Ryan Evans NOT be gay? The fashion sense, the momma’s boy complex, he does musical theater, always hangs out with his sister. Sharpay is practically a drag queen with her makeup, costumes and over the topness. And pretty boy Zac Efron is basically molded from plastic during the movie and is practically the archetype of a twink.
Maybe the creators had this in mind, and wanted to make a campy parody movie. Or maybe they thought they were making a really good musical. Yikes.
And it has to be said, this one pales in comparison to the original, where the songs were catchy and well done, for pop songs. I wasn’t feelin’ any of the songs in this one, except maybe “Gotta Go My Own Way” because it was a bit cheesy and sounded like your archetypal broadway show-stopper.