Big thanks to everyone who commented on my first High School Musical post!
Today I’m discussing the second movie cleverly titled High School Musical 2. Basically, six months after the first movie, the crew is on summer break and due to the magical powers of Sharpay, they all end up working at the country club owned by her parents. Much to her chagrin actually because she only wanted Troy to get a job there and not the entire high school. Uh oh. Maybe she should have given clearer directions to her the short and stout dude who follows her every command. (Poor guy.)
At its best, High School Musical 2 is a combination of Saved by the Bell at Malibu Sands and a toned down version of Dirty Dancing.
But like any great Disney Channel movie, I still have questions. Here are a few of them:
- How did Zac get so confident in six months but still not be okay with singing? Hello! He wouldn’t have Gabriella if he hadn’t sung in front of the whole school!
- I get that Zac’s teammates look up to him but it really frustrated me how they blamed him for their unhappiness at their country club jobs. Are you going to follow him your whole life, guys?
- Gabriella takes a break from being a brainiac and instead acts super naive and cheery in this movie. Too much sun? Dehydration? That lifeguard bathing suit? I wish her storyline had a little bit more oomph.
- Is Sharpay ever going to stop being a snot? No. Nope. Nope.
- Who’s idea was it to have Troy channel a Disney princess and see his reflection in the lake during an uber “serious” moment? (I couldn’t stop laughing.)
- The ending. I don’t want to spoil it for you, and the part I’m thinking of is so minor but why oh why would you end the movie on such an awkward note? I cringe every single time.
How does it stack up against the first? Well, I loved the songs and the dancing just as much even if the storyline was kind of on the bland side. I also really missed Ms. Darbus! The country club guy didn’t do it for me, but I did love that Ryan broke out of Sharpay’s shadow and chose to converse with the other kids. “I Can’t Dance” and his time choreographing the talent show number for the other Wildcats was really fun and I wished we could have seen more of that. (Ryan, in general, is a great character.)
It was the end that really struck me. Everyone has given up on Troy, Sharpay’s hopes of winning the talent show are lost, and suddenly out of the crowd comes Gabriella singing the wonderful “Everyday”. Automatically, I thought of Johnny Castle returning at the end of Dirty Dancing, saying his most famous line and taking Baby up on stage with him. Even the way Troy and Gabriella looked at each other as they sang their duet reminded me of the infamous “Time of Your Life” dance number.
Sure, this is one of those cases where the first movie just cannot live up to the first, but I’m okay with that. The cast chemistry still makes this a blast to watch; I can only imagine that the whole experience felt like summer camp. Maybe it’s a little dramatic at times, but, all in all, it’s a movie about wanting to have a blast with your friends and making good choices before real life takes over. Can’t go wrong with that, or some healthy dance competition. We also can’t help that Troy is a sensitive, tortured soul who is constantly looking for himself.
I cry during: “Gotta Go My Own Way” (it’s SO emotional!) and “Everyday” every single viewing.
I wish I could: do that “All For One” dance (without falling into the pool).
I call: Troy’s “Bet On It” number = Zac’s serious moment.
Did you know: Miley Cyrus had a cameo in the end number of the movie.
Best line: Troy’s idea of a romantic summer includes downloading music. (High school love is the best.)