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Mainstream - Fame Blu-ray (2009 version)

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Fame Blu-ray (2009 Version)
Kay Panabaker, Naturi Naughton, Bebe Neuwirth, Kelsey Grammer
Directed by Kevin Tancharoen
MGM 2009
107 minutes and 123 minutes

You are officially a geezer when there are remakes of movies you saw in theatres. This is the case for 1980’s Fame. Cynical me thinks this 2009 Fame is just a marketing ploy to ride the High School Musical bandwagon. This remake is much more innocuous that the original. It is also much more superficial. The musical numbers are very good. Fame Blu-ray features the original theatrical version and a 123 minute Extended Dance Version.

Fame opens with the Debbie Allen voice-over from the TV show and the auditions. Allen’s character, now the principal of the NewYork School for the Performing Arts, gets to do a similar speech after the auditions. Bebe Neuwirth, a Broadway musical star, plays the dance teacher. Grammer plays the Shorofsky character.

Fame DVD version at Amazon

Characters here are just a set-up for a song and dance number. Of course, you have to put willing suspension of disbelief aside to buy the spectacular lunch room improvised numbers with the studio quality voice and music.

The structure for the 2009 Fame is simple. Introduce the characters and their problem or situation, present the home life of a few to set up future conflicts, and then have them graduate a year courtesy of surtitles. Reality strikes during the sophomore year. This reality is much nicer than in the original version.

Fame is as glitzy as the word and as superficial.

Special features on the Fame Blu-ray include deleted scenes, the talent search, and a music video.

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