Monday, September 28, 2009

FAME: I've had more memorable turds

This review is brought to you by Daniel Plainview.

We went into this film with very low expectations, which it constantly failed to live up to. At the very least, we expected some effort to remake the original FAME – instead we got a mish-mash of seemingly (and as it turned out, actually) unconnected scenes interspersed with disappointingly crap dancing, singing, acting and tunes. The original’s themes of sex, drugs, racism and disillusionment were replaced by a wank-a-log of superficial, pointless, middle-class “problems”, inconsequential relationships and breakups, and needlessly worried black parents. Even the songs from the original were depressingly absent.

The set-pieces were damp squibs, they were more about tits-n-ass than production values or choreography. The cardboard-cut-out so-called characters failed to develop in the audience even one iota of engagement or interest. The dialogue descended into meaningless drivel or saccharine monologues (“success is love” – “if you don’t open up you’ll never be an actor”). The camerawork was lazy, and like the rest of the film insulted the viewer’s intelligence.

10 minutes in, I asked myself, “is this as good as it gets?” Sadly, it was. An hour later I asked Bina007 whether I’d fallen asleep during the part that contained the point. She confirmed that I hadn’t, and she suggested we leave. Stupidly I declined. We waited until the bitter end, and were rewarded with an unintentionally hilarious finale, complete with slow-motion ballet to a song called “Don’t Be Afraid to Succeed!” I laughed – but the £8.50 I’d spent on a ticket wasn’t laughing with me.

Perhaps most damningly of all, an hour later as Mrs Plainview and I wrote this review, neither of us could remember a single name of a single character in the movie. The only disagreement we had was when Mrs Plainview thought the strapline to this review should be: "gives a bad name to the word 'shite'" As you can see I over-ruled her, but still went for a suitably poo-based slogan.

This was execrable. Rent the original on DVD, or better still, buy the “Best of the 80s” CD from Woolworths Online, turn up your ghetto-blaster, put on a red head-band and rock away. Whatever you do, don’t go and see this – it’s the worst film I’ve seen this year – and by far the most awful remake I’ve ever seen.

Really, truly shocking.

FAME is on release in the USA, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Canada, Estonia and Singapore. It opens next week in Greece, Israel and Belgium. It opens in October 7th in Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Denmark, Iceland, Italy and Sweden. It opens on October 15th in Slovenia, Brazil, Cyprus, Finland and Norway. It opens on October 30th in Austria and Spain. It opens on November 19th in Germany and Bulgaria. It opens on December 10th in Russia and on January 7th in the Czech Republic.


  1. The fundamental problem is that none of the people that you are meant to believe are so talented that they got through an audition at odds of 10,000 to 200, are actually that talented. A classic example is when the singing teacher played by Megan Mullally, stands up in a karaoke bar and apparently wows her students with her quote unquote amazing performance. We were sitting thinking, this woman is shrieking - this is nothing that I would call talent. Ditto, the scene when Naturi Naughton of HSM fame is supposed to have laid down this insanely cool club track, the actual song was really lame.

  2. She sounded like a fucking smurf