High School Musical 3: Senior Year: 2 Disc Disney DVD with Digital Copy Directed by: Kenny Ortega Cast: Zac Efron, Vanessa Anne Hudgens, Ashley Tisdale, Lucas Grabeel, Corbin Bleu, Monique Coleman Time: 1 hr 45 mins Rating: G
Plot: It’s senior year at East High School, and the original gang from High School Musical 1 and 2 come together to create one last musical before graduation and inevitable adulthood (hang on, kids! Don’t do it!).
Who’s It For? Anyone who likes musicals, anyone who has kids, or even anyone with a soul. Vampires need not apply.
Movie: This movie is delirious and giddy and I welcome any film that keeps the modern musical alive. The songs are fast and snappy, the dance sequences are wonderful, and the actors are all very talented people. High School Musical 3: Senior Year is a spirited and squeaky clean entertainment for kids, and surprisingly palatable for adults as well.
The villains are more obnoxious than evil (and darned good singers and dancers), all the characters are excited to transfer into college, and no one smokes, drinks, or indulges in anything remotely self-destructive or harmful to others. This is a great little Utopia and I’d say it’s a perfect escape, as well as a possible inspiration, to younger kids.
Movie Score: 8/10
Deleted Scenes: It’s always interesting to see what was edited out of the film, because it speaks for the overall flow. Very rarely do I actually wish the cut scene was included and I think the editors choose these particular scenes wisely. Still, it dangles just a tad bit more meat in front of the rabid throngs.
Out of Sync—Bloopers: Bloopers are incredibly fun, but they are the most rewarding when we are given more than quick, heavily edited flashes. It did look like the actors had a blast making this movie, and it served to remind me how disappointed I was that Lucas Grabeel didn’t get more screen time.
Sing Along With the Movie: Excellent choice, guys. This is a must-have for younger fans and even for really brave, albeit emotionally stunted adults. The songs are so poppy and catchy that adding a sing along was just crucial.
Backstage Disney: An invitation behind-the-scenes for the senior prom and the costumes. Like the bloopers, it’s almost too hyper-edited to really provide much substance. It’s flashy and interesting to look at, but relatively empty and half-hearted. There could have been much more here.
The Other Extras:
Night of Nights It's All in the Dress DisneyFile digital copy of the extended movie
An adult could enjoy High School Musical 3: Senior Year, but the real joy comes from seeing it with a kid (or even a whole theater filled with kids). When Efron takes off his shirt to change into his basketball uniform, all the girls tittered and giggled, and whenever Efron and Hudgens were singing love songs to each other, the audience would audibly sigh as one collective, twitterpated entity. The film is entertaining and well done, and its potential for good, clean family bonding-time is invaluable.
Obviously, the DVD is a must have for fans, but I was a little surprised by the scant volume of extra features. The core value of the DVD is the movie itself, but it does not appear as though the producers put a lot of effort into giving the audience more than a few gifts on the side. This is too bad, because this particular audience has poured a lot of money into the High School Musical franchise. Again, it shouldn't stop anyone from buying the DVD, but a deeper show of audience appreciation would've been appropriate.
Final Score: 8/10