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Musical

[9] Jim Henson’s Muppets make the leap from television to the silver screen in this comedy-musical road trip across America that shows us how the foam and felt vaudeville troupe found each other and entered show business. We meet Kermit playing banjo in a swamp, inspired by a passing agent to go to Hollywood. Driven by the desire to entertain and make people happy, Kermit …

[4] In this animated rock musical out of Canada, a waning pop star named Mok seeks to summon a demon for his own nefarious gain. But to do so, he must find a voice powerful enough to open the gateway to the demon’s dimension. He finds that voice in Angel, a singer vying along with her boyfriend, Omar, for the top spot in their band. …

[7] One of the ultimate ‘little movies that could,’ Dirty Dancing is a low-budget sleeper sensation that is arguably the most popular and enduring movie released in its year. Set in a Catskills resort in 1963, the film is a coming-of-age story for Frances ‘Baby’ Houseman (Jennifer Grey) as she wanders from the family-friendly on-site entertainment into the staff’s secluded after-hours parties. There the cha-cha …

[4] Guys and Dolls pits men against women and vice against virtue in a light-hearted movie musical adapted from the popular Broadway play. Marlon Brando and Frank Sinatra headline as two New York gamblers who make a bet that Brando can’t woo a female missionary (Jean Simmons) to a dinner date in Havana. The date unexpectedly results in true love, but the budding romance is …

[8] Julie Andrews stars as a magical nanny who swoops into a turn-of-the-century London family’s home to help two neglected children (Karen Dotrice and Matthew Garber) reconnect with their busy-body parents. Mary Poppins is often regarded the best of Walt Disney’s live-action efforts, thanks to an effervescent combination of music and fantasy, and charismatic performances from Andrews and co-star Dick Van Dyke, who plays a …

[8] Burt Reynolds and Dolly Parton star in this stage musical adaptation (based on a true story) about a bordello madam and a county sheriff who fight a tabloid television reporter’s campaign to close a legendary Texas whorehouse called the Chicken Ranch. The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas is a bawdy good time, with charming performances from Parton and Reynolds, fun musical numbers, and comic …

[3] Rival breakdancing teams the Delivery Boys and the Devil Dogs plan to compete under the Brooklyn Bridge, but on the day of the show, three of the Boys are missing in action. Turns out the leader of the Dogs has tricked their pizza parlor boss into sending them on sticky assignments. One boy is held captive by a lusty rich girl, another becomes a …

[3] In an abstract void of color gradation, it’s Donald Duck’s birthday. He magically receives three strange presents that transform into song-and-dance lessons about Mexico and South America, featuring two other cartoon birds named José Carioca (a parrot) and Panchito (a rooster). A five-year old might be entranced by the bright Technicolor imagery and lively music featured in The Three Caballeros, but the frenetic pace …

[8] Tension between rival New York City gangs the Jets and the Sharks is wound to a tragic snapping point after one young Jet falls head over heels for the sister of the Sharks’ leader. West Side Story is based on the landmark stage musical featuring music by Leonard Bernstein, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, and exciting dance choreography by Jerome Robbins, who co-directs this film …

[3] John Travolta returns under the curious direction of Sylvester Stallone for this sequel to the mega-hit Saturday Night Fever. But whereas Saturday Night Fever was a sincere story about a young man with big dreams and lessons to learn, Staying Alive is just a plodding procedural love-triangle that climaxes in an over-the-top music number of camp proportions. Travolta’s Tony Manero character seems to have …

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