Features

High School Musical Goes Remix

A Look At the New Double-DVD Set

by Paul Hanson

When my daughter and I walked into the Girl Scout-sponsored Daddy-Daughter Dance recently, the dance floor was empty. But as soon as the first chords of "Breaking Free" began, there were screams of joy from what seemed like hundreds of 10-year-old girls. The dance floor was suddenly a mob as dads began filing to the bleachers to watch their daughters scream the lyrics to the tune.

This was in April 2006, shortly after High School Musical premiered on the Disney Channel. Now, in early 2007, Disney continues to feed the marketing machine behind the hit film with a remix DVD version that is quite entertaining.

There were never any limits to where the popularity of this movie could go. If you've been living under a rock, the general gist of the film is to break through stereotypes and be who you want to be. Troy Bolton (Zac Efron) is the high school basketball team's star player. He also is a fine singer. He admits to his new friend Gabriella (Vanessa Anne Hudgins) that his friends don't know about his singing, which any student of foreshadowing can tell you means he'll have to sing.

Eventually, the duo wins a callback for the "high school musical" and the climax of the movie comes when Troy's playoff basketball game -- not even a championship game -- and Gabriella's honor society competition get scheduled on the same day. Together, the jocks and the geeks must work together to allow Troy to both sing in the callback and play in the playoff game.

Yes, it shows that cliques exist, which anyone who went to high school can tell you. But it's handled deftly here; there's an amusing scene in the lunch room where all the different cliques confess to liking things outside of their group, the funniest being when one of Troy's teammates mentions his love of cooking.

Perhaps the funniest moments of the movie are when Sharpay and her brother Ryan are on screen. These two characters play off each other with delightful humor and playfulness. The manner in which Sharpay berates the composer is priceless. Ryan's exclamation, "Maybe we're being Punk'd! Maybe we'll meet Ashton!" went over the head of my kids but I chuckle every time he says it.

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In the end, I have watched this movie too many times and I'd sure like to tell you that it is a stupid movie, that you should disregard the Disney marketing machine hype, and that you should not sit down with your children and watch it. I can't do that. As the father of an eight- and a 10-year-old, I recommend this movie. I even recommend buying this "remix" version of the movie just so you too can learn the dance steps. The music videos that get played often on Disney Channel, like "Breaking Free" and my personal favorite "We're All In This Together" are included as well.

All in all, an entertaining movie, musical and dance lesson all in one that you can enjoy with your kids.




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