Ah, the little franchise that could - after two TV outings, the phenomenon of High School Musical makes its debut on the big screen. Having missed the first two instalments, it's impossible to know if this venture differs wildly from the last but considering Disney's 'if it ain't broke...' approach it's easy to presume it doesn't. Smiley Troy (Efron in full-on smile mode) is still in love with smiley Gabriella (Hudgens returns smiling despite those nude pictures) but with college looming they fear they will be separated. Meanwhile two team up with other smilers as they rehearse for the end of year musical and make plans for the upcoming prom, all the while singing and dancing (and smiling) through eleven generic and bland pop numbers. Pitches squarely at the 'I'm all alone / I'm on the phone / I'm fourteen years old' demographic, HSM3:SR won't disappoint. It's a harmless, glittery, syrupy chaste movie that parents will have no qualms about letting their kids see. However, apart from an entertaining opening sequence on the basketball court, the choreography is a let down with nothing special to recommend it. There aren't any decent gags on show either, which is disheartening since this is the second sequel - surely the writers should be more comfortable and could have had a little fun with the characters? Even if it was out of pure boredom.
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