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Price I paid : it was a gift.
Amazon have it for £11.39
Jump back in time with this happy light-hearted musical.
When I call this a musical, don't think Mamma Mia.
This is a documentary style movie, with 90% of it being made of of concert footage of ABBAs 1977 tour of Australia. With a little side storyline intertwined between the live performances played by actors.
The story is about a young disk jokey called Ashely. He is quite highly strung at the best if times, but when his eccentric boss gives him the daunting mission of getting an unauthorised interview with ABBA before they leave the country, he almost has a nervous breakdown. Get an interview sounds simple enough, but when you see footage of news casts from their visit, you'll see that getting an interview with Elvis after he died would have been easier.
ABBAs popularity in Australia was incredible, think the Beatles meets Michael Jackson. The opening scene alone with the fans camped outside the air port is crazy. "WE WANT ABBA, WE WANT ABBA!" they chanted over and over again until all hell breaks loose when the four Swedes make their appearance in matching White summer jackets with their respective letter on the back. (the name ABBA was an acronym of the four members names Agnetha, Bjorn, Benny and Anni-frid)
From that moment on Ashely is running around like a headless chicken trying desperately to get the interview as the days and hours tick down to ABBA leaving Australia .
What makes the movie more believable than it sounds, is the fact that neither ABBA nor their security team knew about this strange man that had no press pass and was stalking them day and night trying to push his way towards them. You can see many time how puzzled they are as he begs from a distance for an interview. Pluse he gets man handled more than once by their overzealous bodyguards.
This was the brainchild of the director of the movie Lasse Halstrom who directed all of their famous music videos, and has gone on to be nominated for an academy award for his movie Chocolat staring Johnny Depp.
This idea of them not being aware makes for a believable challenge. I won't spoil the end.
Now for the important stuff, the music.
All of their hits up until 1977 are here. There are no voulez Vous, and no super troupers here as they weren't even written at the time of the tour. However SOS, Waterloo, Mamma Mia, The name of the game, Money money money, Dancing Queen and many many more are performed. Everybody knows ABBA for their songs and maybe for their outlandish costumes, but they were wonderful live performers, with great energy and spectacular voices.
Aganetha Faltskog (the blond one) looks stunning throughout the movie. And is visibly embarrassed by the attention her backside attracts. At a Sydney press conference an Australian reporter asked "is it true, that you are the proud owner of an award that declares you the lady with the worlds most sexiest bottom?" this actually was true she was one of the first, if not THE first to be awarded rear of the year. An award that would haunt her for the rest of her life.
In another comical Scene Bjorn (her husband at the time) reads a tabloid front page headline to her.
"Agnatha's bottom tops show!"
"Oh my God," she says."Don't they have bottoms in Australia man?"
This is most suited to ABBA fans, as most people just want their greatest hits. If your looking for that may I recommend ABBA Gold on DVD or CD.
But for me this is the best of both worlds, you get to hear the music and see the act live.
Plus go on a little jury with the actors.
This is my favourite music DVD, because it's a little different, but in a good way
The second disc is full of extras from original movie trailers to interviews. To worldwide advertising and merchandise galleries.
You don't have to love ABBA to love this.
You just have to love music.
Whilst bands making movies has traditionally never been a good idea, there is something charming and enjoyable about ABBA the movie. I have always been an ABBA fan and when I first saw this movie, gosh about 20 years ago now, it made me love them even more.
Filmed during the groups 1976/7 tour of Australia, the movie showcases many of ABBA's live concerts and gives the opportunity to see behind the scenes footage as well. With a limp storyline which is just about credible, the highlight of the film is very definitely the group themselves.
The film starts with footage of ABBA arriving at the airport and being welcomed by their Australian fans. At the same time Ashley Wallace, a DJ, is told by his boss he needs to secure an exclusive interview with ABBA, to be broadcast on the night they leave the country. Cue the DJ running around Australia in pursuit of the group, whilst they dance and sing on stage.
Featuring many of ABBA's best known and love songs, such as Money Money Money, Dancing Queen, Mamma Mia, Fernando as well as lesser known but just as good - Rock Me, When I kissed the Teacher and Why Did It Have To Be Me? ABBA fans are also treated to glimpses of a mini-musical The Girl With The Golden Hair, which Benny and Bjorn wrote and performed in Australia. Only three songs from the musical have ever made it onto an album but one of the songs was Thank you For the Music.
The director of the film was at the time director to all of ABBA's music videos, with the aim of making it big in the world of film direction. You may have heard of him - he's been nominated for an Oscar or two - Lasse Hallstrom ring any bells?
My only gripe about the DVD edition is the lack of special features. Considering how many hours of footage that were shot on the tour, I, like many ABBA fans, would have liked a few extra hours on the DVD. Instead you get an interview about the movie - in Swedish with subtitles.
Abba fans and movie buffs alike will enjoy "ABBA the Movie". It was directed by Lasse Hallstrom, who was soon summoned to Hollywood and is now one of the world's finest movie directors. His latest work has included Oscar nominations for "The Cider House Rules" and "Chocolat". As a young director in Sweden, Hallstrom made his name directing ABBA's pop videos for world-wide release. In 1976 he followed the group on tour to film a documentary, added a simple plot, and made "ABBA the Movie". The film was a huge box office success in 1977 when it was first released. It follows Agnetha, Benny, Bjorn and Frida on their tour of Australia where they received a sensational reception. There is plenty of live concert footage, featuring many of their greatest songs. Hallstrom has described this experience as a "film school" for him, as the budget was huge and he could experiment with the latest technology. The special effects look tame today, but in 1977 his camera work caused a stir. Look out of the "elevator" scene during the Eagle song - this effect was later used in the Superman movie. This is a great film. Catch it on TV (numerous "ABBA nights" on various channels) or buy the video, for a little piece of movie history !
I was never a great fan of Abba and approached this movie with some trepidation. However, after having seen it I have more admiration for their music as the movie puts it across very well. The storyline (such as there is one) follows the band on a tour of Australia, whilst being chased by a DJ who wants an interview. There is quite a but of humour and the moments of the band on stage are fantastic. Well worth seeking out.
Yes, the film does a have a pretty poor plot but the idea was great. I love Abba so I would watch this movie a million times over just for the live footage of them playing and singing and just being themselves. The girls have great voices and the blokes are excellent songwriters who play their instruments really well. I personally thought the part with the dream sequence involving The Name of the Game was the best part of the movie, that and the concert footage. Anyone who knows anything about Abba should watch this film, a must for die hard Abba fans only.
I've read a lot of bad reviews about this film, but if you don't take it too seriously and just sit back and enjoy, then you can't go wrong. I know the plot is really weak - Aussie DJ has to get exclusive interview with Abba before they leave the country at the end of their tour - but just listen to the music and forget all that. I remember this film coming out in 1978 (I was 12) and pestering my mum to take me to see it, and afterwards buying the video - it cost me £35 by the way as videos were still relatively new. I still watch it every now and then (and enjoy it!) so stop knocking it! It's funny to see a young Lou from "neighbours" playing about 3 different parts, they must have been short on actors in Australia then!
ABBA what were you thinking? Ok bands going for movies never seems to work and this is a dramatic flop. For one they are hardly ever in it and two it’s the most unmemorable musical/film I have ever seen. The basic plot is that some Australian media fellow runs around after ABBA trying to get a show for them and whatever and interviewing, I can’t really remember but it’s really pants. The camerawork is very poor, I could probably do better, and it seriously lacks a plot. The only thing keeping me from really panning it is the fact that it’s about the musical maestro’s ABBA, they should never have touched this and neither should anyone else, let it rot.
This film was a big let down. As a child, I loved ABBA along with many of my friends and can remember the excitement when this came out. I'm no longer an ABBA fan - I've grown up since then! This film was a huge let down! They were hardly in it - the film spends most of the time chasing round an Aussie journo while he tries to put together a show about ABBA for his radio station. He interviews lots of fans about them, gets chased out of buildings a lot, drives around in his car trying to get to ABBA and interview them - and basically that's it! There is some ABBA footage in the film, taken from their Australian tour - live songs, short interview snippets but there is nowhere near enough to satisfy any ABBA fan. Watch out for the Aussie actors in this film who are now more familiar faces from certain Aussie soaps ...