The sum is less than the parts in the new movie version of Hairspray. The parts include the spectacular drag performance of John Travolta. Speaking as a girl baritone, I didn't mind his voice at all. He still has it and provided the best dancing in the movie in a movie about dancing.
The parts include Queen Latifah as the disk jockey for "Negro Day." She has a couple of nice songs, but is not a Broadway style belter. Surprisingly.
The parts include Christopher Walken as Wilbur Turnblad. His cluelessness with Michele Pfeifer as the magnificent villainess Velma Von Tussle, and his work with Travolta were highlights.
The parts include Nicole Blonsky as Tracy Turnblad, a performer new to the movies who looks perfect and sings well, but whose dancing abilities are obviously lacking. The movie is supposed to be about how well she dances, but she spends most of the dance numbers watching on the sidelines.
I missed John Waters performance as a Flasher. Where was I?
During the number "Welcome to the sixties" we see a shot of a very pregnant woman in a bar smoking and drinking. In the movie we see the same clouds of hairspray we saw on stage, but when the TV camera cuts away for commercial, the cast members all start coughing. It is the sixties as seen from another century.
It's fun and very nostalgic. It was my era. I'm allowed.
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