When was the last time I had so much fun at a movie? With an impossible title like Eurovision Song Contest: The Story Of Fire Saga, it can only get worse from there, right? Well, right and wrong. The film strings together a series of insane laughs. Miraculously, it holds together, never falling off that imaginary cliff where people often find themselves perched when high on non-prescriptive drugs.
The trick is to enjoy the ride. Plus, if you are an ABBA fanatic (like I am) the cheesy humour is not only bearable it’s even fun. So bring it on!
The film opens with a family in Iceland watching that historic moment when ABBA sang the song ‘Waterloo’ and won the Eurovision contest. That’s how we first meet little Lars Eriksson and Sigrit Eriksdóttir, childhood pals who dream of winning the Eurovision. Who would think they would grow up to be Will Farrell and Rachel McAdams?! If only the locals knew, they would have put a restraining order on God’s will.
Will and Rachel are as mismatched as humanly possible -- he is an oversized middle-aged hulk. She is a petite young beauty with a voice that soars above the skies.
Oh, by the way, make sure you have good headphones for this one.The music and songs are fantastic. They include a cover version of ABBA’s ‘Waterloo’ which had me jumping out of my seat to sing along.
The fun never ends. No one is counting the torrent of asininity and the stream of absurdity in the plot. The fun part of the Farrell-McAdams chemistry is that they have no chemistry. They have been in this together since their childhood because they are both dreamers. Their journey from their quaint snow-swathed town in Iceland to the venue of the Eurovision contest is dotted with ditsy episodes that will seem like fun only if you enjoy de-intellectualised wit.
Both Will Farrell and Rachel McAdams get the point. That there is none. Except to have fun as you chase your dreams. But the best, most endearing performance in the film comes from Dan Stevens. Playing a criminally handsome pseudo-Adonis Eurovision contestant from Russia, Stevens does the impossible: he makes the arrogant twit not only sympathetic but even likable. This is a great performance in a film where greatness is not to be sought.
Wildly over-the-top and insanely aspirational, Eurovision Song Contest: The Story Of Fire Saga is that flaky flick you missed because it looked too stupid to get your attention. But that’s the key to the film’s supreme efficacy. It makes stupid seem cool. The songs help. But the attitude of brainless salvation is what gets to you.
Image source: IMDb, Youtube/Netflix