Favorite Fridays highlight media the HCDL staff recommend. Find your next favorite book, audiobook, movie, TV show, magazine, etc., here every Friday this summer— and share your own favorites in the weekly posts’ comments!

This week we’re sharing some of our librarians’ favorite musical film adaptations. If you’ve seen these musicals, share your thoughts in the comments along with your own favorite musicals!

*Hoopla is available to Howell library district residents only.

The Greatest Showman

Call# BLU Gre

I have seen this movie a number of times that I probably should not admit to. I blame the children, but I am secretly never disappointed when they request it. The circus setting is exciting and colorful. The music is fantastic! And the cast (Hugh Jackman, Zac Efron, Zendaya, Keala Settle, Michelle Williams, etc.) does not disappoint. If you haven’t seen this one yet, you should! And if you haven’t watched it enough to know every song by heart, you should probably watch it again. Or bring home the soundtrack.

Into the Woods

Call# DVD Musicals Int

Into the Woods is a fusion of fairy tale characters and what their “happily ever afters” actually look like. This dark musical comedy follows a baker and his wife as they are joined by Little Red Ridinghood, Cinderella, and Jack (and the Beanstalk). They are all searching for something different as they journey into the woods, and the trials they face on that journey threaten to unravel them. My favorite DVD version is the 1990 Original Broadway Production, starring Bernadette Peters, Chip Zien, Joanna Gleason, and many others. I love the songs in this one, so I highly recommend giving the soundtrack a listen after you watch the musical! You can also check out the newer adaptation of the musical, which was produced by Disney in 2015 and stars Meryl Streep, Chris Pine, Anna Kendrick, Johnny Depp, and more. You can also read an ebook version of the musical on Hoopla, which includes an eight-page insert with color photographs from the film!

Sweeney Todd : the Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Call# DVD Musicals Swe

The melodramatic (yet often black comedic) tale of an unjustly-imprisoned man turned serial killer taking gruesome revenge on those who wronged him and his family. This Tim Burton film version of Stephen Sondheim’s original 1979 Broadway musical  features Johnny Depp as the titular Demon Barber and Helena Bonham Carter in the role of the wicked meat pie baker Nellie Lovett. Bonham Carter does justice to this role, which was so fantastically performed by the original Broadway cast member Angela Lansbury (yes, she was the amoral Mrs. Lovett before she was the motherly Mrs. Potts). You can find the original Broadway songbook by Stephen Sondheim on Hoopla*. You can also compare the 2005 Broadway revival soundtrack featuring Patti LuPone as Mrs. Lovett to the 2007 Tim Burton movie adaptation’s soundtrack on Hoopla*. And while you’re at it, check out the Binge Box: May I Have This Song and Dance?, a collection of 6 musical DVDs all gathered into one “binge box” for a spectacular movie night including Sweeney Todd and The Greatest Showman (see recommendation above^^^).