Mamma Mia Paper

Mamma Mia Paper.
The film Mamma Mia! (Lloyd, 2008) is based on the extremely popular and successful Broadway musical which opened in 1999 in London. Since then, this Broadway production has become a global phenomenon which has entertained countless audiences, and still holds on strong as one of the most enjoyed and accepted musicals of this generation (Shenton, 2009). And so it is assumed that the motion picture adaptation of Mamma Mia! would be just as popular; and it was, expanding into one of the highest-grossing films of 2008 as well as receiving two Golden Globe nominations along with many other awards (Mamma Mia! 1990-2009). The film portrays a young woman named Sophie, played by Amanda Seyfried, on the eve of her wedding, who is convinced that in order to feel complete she must find her father. After reading her mother’s diary and revealing that she has three potential fathers, she proceeds to secretly invite all three of them to her wedding. Many of the themes and elements that encompass the film are typical of a classical Hollywood musical such as the presence of utopia and spontaneity, the emotional connection between the characters and their audience, and the constant premise of nostalgia.
However, Director, Phyllida Lloyd, uses these themes and elements, as well as new techniques in soundtrack development, to make Mamma Mia! unique. She successfully manipulates the conventions of the classical musical and pieces together an updated version that speaks directly to its contemporary audience. Musicals were originally introduced in contemporary cinema by Hollywood in an attempt to create an escape for people during periods of economic and social instability. People who lived during eras such as the Great Depression, and other times of recession, had suppressed feelings of exhaustion, dreariness, and hopelessness.
Musicals, with their utopian sensibility, served as a retreat from the real world and brought feelings of happiness, life, and energy to these people, even if it was only for a short time. The way in which musicals achieve this is by posing this idea that the characters in the film are ‘real’ people, and their problems and resolutions to those problems are also ‘real’. When the audience ‘suspends their belief’, they forget that what they are watching is an actual construction and get swept up in the euphoric experience that encompasses the film (McMillin, 2006, p. 55).

This utopian feel is a key aspect concerning the construction of a musical, since its main focus is to distract its audience from any hardships that may be occuring in their lives. The idea of a utopia refers to the “imagined or wished for versions of the human condition which are envisaged as actually happening in the world. ” (Parker, 2002, p. 11). So if the audience can actually envision and believe that the events taking place in Mamma Mia! can actually happen, it keeps that hope alive within the individual watching the film that this happiness could also come to them. Mamma Mia! llustrates this utopia through the beauty of the film’s setting, the spontaneity of its musical numbers, and its happy ending which wraps up nicely with all characters finding their place in the world and true happiness. Mamma Mia! is set on a remote Greek island called Kalchuri and is filled with vivid shots of the luxurious beaches and a vast mountain side. Total relaxation and happiness is the type of environment that this island paradise presents to its viewers. To further the island’s appeal, Sophie mentions in the film that it was “once the site of Aphrodite’s fountain, the goddess of love.
If you drank the water you were supposed to find true love and perfect happiness. ” This mythical fountain ads a mysterious element to the island making it even more appealing to the audience, and also serves as a metaphor foreshadowing the status of absolute utopia that is finally restored towards the conclusion of the film. The audience can easily envision themselves in this type of setting, removing them from their harsh reality into this blissful place where almost anything can happen.
Therefore, the events which take place in the film seem more believable along with the immense focus on spontaneity, which also adds to the euphoric atmosphere which encompasses the film. The theme of spontaneity is common in most musicals and is prominent in Mamma Mia! taking form throughout the film in random events such as an arbitrary burst of laughter by a group of Greek people for no reason in particular, or a piano placed in the most awkward position on a dock with a man playing the exact cords in time with the song during the “Dancing Queen” scene.
Spontaneity is also exposed in most of the musical numbers where the characters have a tendency to just break into song at any given moment, even when the audience is least expecting it. “The musical, technically the most complex type of film produced in Hollywood, paradoxically has always been the genre which attempts to give the greatest illusion of spontaneity and effortless. ” (Cohan, 2002, pp. 34-35). The character Harry Bright, played by Colin Firth, even goes as far as to articulate the word several times throughout the film referring to his own spontaneity, or lack thereof.
By the end of the film, Harry’s character breaks through his shell of insecurity and reveals to everyone that he has found true love in the heart of another man. This detail comes as a shock and surprise to everyone, including the audience, furthering the development of his character and his spontaneity. Harry is not the only character in the film that finds true love and happiness at the conclusion of the film. Donna, played by Meryl Streep, and long time love interest Sam, played by Pierce Brosnan, are finally reunited.
Her daughter Sophie and fiance Sky, played by Dominic Cooper, decide not to get married, and to leave the island and see the world, which is what they both originally wanted. Another unlikely pair is Bill and Rosie, played by Stellan Skarsgard and Julie Walters, who also find each other and are expected to also live happily ever after. To top it all off Aphrodite’s fountain, mentioned above, is finally discovered bursting through a crack in the courtyard and raining down on everyone symbolizing that ultimate utopia has finally been restored on the island.
The way in which the film is wrapped up, is representative of its utopian nature. Many issues presented at the start of the film are no longer important such as the impending question which the whole plot is based on, who is Sophie’s father? The audience does not worry about this minor detail because utopia is reinstated and this happiness allows the audience to overlook the some loose ends that may be present at the end of the film. The feeling of utopia is closely tied in with the emotional connection that the audience feels with the characters and their happiness or sorrow.
The emotions of the characters in the film also become the emotions of the audience, thus the appeal of the musical. Musicals most often will use the emotional vulnerability of the audience to ‘extend the fourth wall’ and establish a high level of emotional investment from the audience. One way in which the film attracts its audience is through the development of the soundtrack. Mamma Mia’s soundtrack unique from other musicals in that it is completely comprised of songs by an enormously popular musical group from the 70s and 80s named ABBA.
Since these songs are so classic, most of the audience, which mainly consists of younger to middle-aged women, already know the words to most of the songs and become involved with the film by singing along with the characters. This also allows for the audience to become particularly attached to the characters, possibly even putting themselves in the character’s shoes. The strongest level of this audience to character relation is most evident during the various musical numbers taking place in the film. Musical numbers are woven into the narrative structure, motivated by character psychology and/or plot development and expressive of the emotions, opinions, or state of mind of the singer. ” (Langford, 2005, p. 85). This is evident in the “Mamma Mia” number, performed by Meryl Streep. The character Donna has just discovered three men from her past in the attic of her old goat house. She has convinced herself that that part of her life was over; however, seeing them again after so many years has made her realize that it still greatly affects her and she cannot resist the urge to see more.
The lyrics of the song, “Mamma mia, here I go again, my my, how can I resist you. Mamma mia, does it show again, my my, just how much I miss you. ” show just how torn Donna is. As she sings these lyrics she is stumbling around, shocked and confused as to exactly why these three men are here. One can hear the bewilderment and frustration in her voice, and also see it in her actions. There is a constant struggle between what her head is telling her and what her heart wants her to do. The entire musical number is playing off her emotions and her state of mind, causing the audience to feel those same feelings.
The mise-en-scene during this scene is interesting; she is alone for most of the scene, but is joined near the end by a group of islanders. This group of people help her in deciding whether or not to confront the three men. The group become just as curious as Donna in finding out why these strangers are on the island. The sight of the men takes Donna back to her past throughout the musical number as all those deep feelings of longing which she has suppressed for so long. The sight of these men makes Donna incredibly nostalgic, which introduces another main theme from the film.
Nostalgia is a prominent theme in the film, the feeling of longing for the past is brought up several times. The plot itself deals with the idea of bringing Donna face-to-face with her past and the characters themselves are constantly referencing ‘the good old days’. Many musical numbers in the film such as “Our Last Summer” and “Slipping Through My Fingers” deal with this issue. One number in particular that references this idea directly is the “Dancing Queen” scene. At the commencement of this scene Donna’s best friend Tanya, played by Christine Baranski, says, “Whatever happened to our Donna?
Life and soul of the party, el rock chick supremo? ” Donna then replies with, “I grew up” and Tanya says, “Well grow back down again! ” Tanya is reminiscing about the past when Donna was a free soul and encourages her to find that inner youthfulness that they are longing to see in her their old friend. The words of the song openly reference the theme of nostalgia; “And when you get the chance, you are the dancing queen, young and sweet, only seventeen. ” These words transport Donna into the past, back to that carefree girl that her friends were encouraging her to find.
This scene also conveys the theme of longing to the rest of the women on the island who are also coping with this same dilemma. Young and old women come together to channel their inner nostalgia and bring back the youthfulness that is trapped inside each one of them. The responsibility and obligation associated with growing old is like a burden over the women keeping them from unleashing their suppressed feelings. This is illustrated in the scene by an older woman who is carrying a bundle of wood on her back.
As Donna and the other women pass her singing and dancing, she proceeds to lift the bundle off her back and throw it aside, while singing “Oh Yeah! ” in time with the song and joining the rest of the women. The bundle of wood is a metaphor for the burden which is inflicted on all women as they grow older. The message that this scene is attempting to portray is that just because you grow older, it doesn’t mean you should let go of your past and youthfulness. Throughout Mamma Mia! the main aspects of a musical are truly seen and even challenged.
Audiences appreciate musicals because the help them escape the, at times, bleak realities of the lives and represent a utopia that they feel is attainable through the extreme emotions expressed by the characters and the storyline. Nostalgia plays a great part in this film in particular because the characters are constantly evaluating their behaviours and questioning the decisions they have made in the past. Mamma Mia! follows the classic structure of a musical but combines an intriguing plot and an extremely popular musical soundtrack creating an appealing film for all audiences to enjoy.
Bibliography Cohan, S. (2002). Hollywood musicals, the film reader. New York: Routledge. Langford, B. (2005). Film genre: Hollywood and Beyond. Edinburgh University Press. Lloyd, P. (Director). (2008). Mamma Mia! [Motion Picture]. Mamma Mia! (1990-2009). Retrieved March 11, 2009, from The Internet Movie Database: http://www. imdb. com/title/tt0795421/ McMillin, S. (2006). The Musical As Drama. New Jersey: Princeton University Press. Parker, M. (2002). Utopia and Organization. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing. Shenton, M. (2009). Mamma Mia! Retrieved March 10, 2009, from http://www. mamma-mia. com/showhistory. asp

Haven’t Found The Relevant Content? Hire a Subject Expert to Help You With
Mamma Mia Paper
Post Your Own Question And Get A Custom Answer
Hire Writer

Mamma Mia Paper

Calculate the price of your order

Select your paper details and see how much our professional writing services will cost.

We`ll send you the first draft for approval by at
Price: $36
  • Freebies
  • Format
  • Formatting (MLA, APA, Chicago, custom, etc.)
  • Title page & bibliography
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Amendments to your paper when they are needed
  • Chat with your writer
  • 275 word/double-spaced page
  • 12 point Arial/Times New Roman
  • Double, single, and custom spacing
  • We care about originality

    Our custom human-written papers from top essay writers are always free from plagiarism.

  • We protect your privacy

    Your data and payment info stay secured every time you get our help from an essay writer.

  • You control your money

    Your money is safe with us. If your plans change, you can get it sent back to your card.

How it works

  1. 1
    You give us the details
    Complete a brief order form to tell us what kind of paper you need.
  2. 2
    We find you a top writer
    One of the best experts in your discipline starts working on your essay.
  3. 3
    You get the paper done
    Enjoy writing that meets your demands and high academic standards!

Samples from our advanced writers

Check out some essay pieces from our best essay writers before your place an order. They will help you better understand what our service can do for you.

Get your own paper from top experts

Order now

Perks of our essay writing service

We offer more than just hand-crafted papers customized for you. Here are more of our greatest perks.

  • Swift delivery
    Our writing service can deliver your short and urgent papers in just 4 hours!
  • Professional touch
    We find you a pro writer who knows all the ins and outs of your subject.
  • Easy order placing/tracking
    Create a new order and check on its progress at any time in your dashboard.
  • Help with any kind of paper
    Need a PhD thesis, research project, or a two-page essay? For you, we can do it all.
  • Experts in 80+ subjects
    Our pro writers can help you with anything, from nursing to business studies.
  • Calculations and code
    We also do math, write code, and solve problems in 30+ STEM disciplines.

Frequently asked questions

Get instant answers to the questions that students ask most often.

See full FAQ
  • What if I’m dissatisfied with the paper I get?

    The average quality score at our professional custom essay writing service is 8.5 out of 10. The high satisfaction rate is set by our Quality Control Department, which checks all papers before submission. The final check includes:
    • Compliance with initial order details.
    • Plagiarism.
    • Proper referencing.
    If for some reason we happen to leave a mistake unnoticed, you are invited to request unlimited revisions of your custom-written paper. For more information, check our Revision Policy. We will do our best to make your experience with Familiar Essays enjoyable.
  • I need an essay on the same day. Is it something you can do?

    Sure. Our writing company offers a fast service with an 8-hour deadline for orders up to master’s level. Make sure to specify the deadline in the order form and our writers will write a paper within the indicated timeslot. Just proceed to submit your requirements here Once you order a custom-written essay, our managers will assign your order to the well-suited writer, who has the best skills and experience for preparing your specific assignment. You can also request one of these extra features:
    • Choose the Writer’s Samples option – study 3 randomly-provided pages from orders that have been written by the assigned writer.
    • Request a specific writer – choose an academic writer from the dropdown list in the order’s form (optional for returning customers).
    You can be sure that your custom writing order will be accomplished by one of our 400+ professional academic writers. They all pass a series of tests to prove their writing prowess and hold the reputation of being the most professional in the industry. Want to make sure writer’s skills match your needs? Get more details on how to choose the appropriate author.
  • How can I be sure your writing service is not a scam?

    We understand that a shade of mistrust has covered the paper writing industry, and we want to convince you of our loyalty. Apart from high-quality writing services, we offer:
    • The chances of students to boost writing skills in a quick and effective way.
    • The opportunity to manage studies and free time in an enjoyable manner.
    • The possibilities to improve overall academic performance.
    Our custom writing company has been working for more than 12 years and always puts quality and clients’ needs first. Our operations are legally documented, we are easily accessible online and offline,
  • Is it legal to use your professional writing service?

    Yes. Custom writing help is not prohibited by any university or college. It’s a 100% legal way of getting professional assistance with paper writing. Hiring writers from an essay writing company is in many ways similar to consulting a tutor – we help you solve the writing issues at hand.
  • How does your service work?

    Our custom writing service is a reliable solution on your academic journey that will always help you if your deadline is too tight. You fill in the order form with your basic requirements for a paper: your academic level, paper type and format, the number of pages and sources, discipline, and deadline. Then, you describe the specific details of the paper you need: add the topic, write or paste the instructions, and attach files to be used, if you have them. After that, an online customer support representative chooses the best writer that specializes in your discipline and assigns him or her to complete the paper according to your requirements. When the paper is ready, we check it for plagiarism and send it to you. If you want to change something, you can request a free revision.
See full FAQ

Take your studies to the next level with our experienced specialists

Live ChatWhatsApp