I went. I saw. I was disappointed. (At least I got to see another preview for New Moon, so I guess I got my money’s worth).
In case you are unaware, newbie director Kevin Tancharoen decided to remake the Oscar-winning 1980 classic, Fame (Parker). Why he thought he could remake a classic, no one knows. The 2009 version follows a group of talented high school students during their fours years at the New York Academy of Performing Arts. Most of the stars are unknowns… and this film is probably not going to help change that. The acting was, for the most part, unmemorable. Naturi Naughton, who plays Denise in the film, clearly has a good voice but, like the majority of the cast, has absolutely no charisma. The only actor I enjoyed was cutie-patootie Asher Book as Marco. And I’m not going to lie, if it weren’t for him, I think I would have left early. I mean he is no Robert Pattinson (drool) or even Zac Efron, and some people have been saying that his haircut resembles that of Ralph Macchio (aka Daniel from The Karate Kid). Nevertheless, his good-boy charm and lovely voice are sure to have tween girls (and maybe a few 20-year olds??) swooning.
Come on, he’s cute… right?
But overall the film falls flat. Perhaps the filmmakers were too ambitious. I mean remakes are always tricky territory, especially when dealing with a beloved film like Fame. This new movie tries to present numerous characters dealing with their own issues and struggles to succeed, but the storylines of each feel underdeveloped in this choppy script. I definitely agree with Brian Lowry of Variety who explains that “there's a ravenous hunger for success and the occasional disappointment, but the kids and their stories have been homogenized in such a way that nothing all that bad – or good, for that matter – really happens to any of them.” The film was slow, boring, and lacked any sort of clear direction. And don’t assume that even though the plot is weak that the singing and dancing is going to make up for it. Because it isn’t. Like Wesley Morris, Boston Globe film critic, stated, “innocent songs and unsuspecting dance routines are hacked to bits” in this film.
So is the new Fame gonna live forever? I think not.