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Saturday, December 27, 2014

Jersey Boys (2014)

This is Clint Eastwood's homage to Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. It begins in the early 1960's in a Jersey neighborhood where the chances of mobbing up were far better than escaping, and Frankie, Tommy, and Nick are in and out of trouble, and in one scene Tommy is getting out of jail when Nick is going in.  Incarceration interferes with the trio's ability to make progress musically, but they manage.  The turning point for them is the addition of Bob Gaudio, who wrote the songs that made the Four Seasons famous.

Whether they’re singing or fighting, “Jersey Boys” is at its best when it focuses on the band members’ chemistry. The actors know their characters’ voices well enough to effortlessly plow through as many Four Seasons songs as the original musical contains. They sound spectacular, and there’s enough of each song to satiate fans and newbies alike.  There is enough music to keep the fan viewer happy, and for days afterwards the tunes will be playing in your head.  The movie is definitely 45 minutes too long, and it may be that Eastwood is too much of a fan himself to make the perfect fan movie.  He does have one scene where Bob is in a room by himself after a show watching, you got it, a Clint Eastwood movie.  So the director managed a cameo.  He couldn't resist.

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