Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga. Grade: D+
Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga tells a story about a couple best friends named Lars (Will Ferrell) and Sigrit (Rachel McAdams), whom reside in the land of Iceland as they’re aspiring musicians. There is one goal in Lars and Sigrit’s mind, as they want to compete in the Eurovision: Song Contest, as they dreamt about it since they were kids watching it on the telly. While the townspeople and country doubts this duo, luck comes into play as they get the opportunity to represent the country of Iceland in the competition. Witness a couple of dreamers live out their dream.
The Cinematography was fine, best shots were when this film takes place back in their hometown of Iceland. I like the scenery during the night time, where it shows the waters of this country, looks nice. The Score of this film was on and off for me, as this film features original songs or remixes of classic tunes. The best original song was certainly Lars and Sigrit’s song in the finale Husavik, as the song felt wholehearted, sweet, genuine, and actually had something to say. I honestly think Lars and Sigrit’s songs were actually standouts, compared to the likes of others. The other original songs were either mediocre at best or simply boring. Especially in the Eurovision montage, as we witness a bunch of songs from contestants, as you honestly want the film to get on with showing Lars and Sigrit’s performance already. Just a bunch of stupid songs, including one where a lyric line reads “I got volcanos on my chest, like I’m Kim West”.... I don’t know what the hell does that even mean, whoever wrote that should never write song lyrics ever again. The song along scene, where the cast sing remixes of classic songs... Very unnecessary. Reminds me of contestants from American Idol coming together to sing a song, before one is eliminated, mixed with something that comes out of Bollywood movie. In Bollywood films they have a random musical sequence, in which is stylized as a music video for some reason, I catch them every now and then when I check out theaters as I can’t lie as I do enjoy dancing along to them. Here it’s whatever I suppose, I didn’t care too much for it, maybe because the songs were sung better.
The cast of this film was alright. Will Ferrell playing Will Ferrell was eh this time around. He’s trying to pull off this accent and it’s honestly pretty ridiculous. I honestly didn’t find him that funny this time around, in fact I found him and his character completely obnoxious. Lars is suppose to be a protagonist, a character in which we root for yet I honestly couldn’t stand him. I guess one positive I can get out of this character, is the fact the character does change over the course of time. He learned a valuable lesson that winning should not be the only thing that matters, living life to the fullest with those who you love and what you love does, so at least they got one thing done right with this character. The film tells us Lars’ dream is to be with Sigrit... Which I didn’t get that intention once. Lars always ignores Sigrit when it comes to her giving him love, avoids kissing Sigrit, disregards Sigrit’s feelings... Yeah I don’t think he had a dream of being with Sigrit at all. Sigrit played by Rachel McAdams was fine, her singing was honestly surprising, not half bad. Sigrit really is the only character we cared about in this entire film. She’s pursuing her dreams because she has a passion for her dream and nothing more than that. She’s a sweet and sincere person, whom wants to make Lars happy, even though he doesn’t deserve her whatsoever. The thing with Sigrit is you keep on rooting for this girl, you honestly hope she gets out of this cage, in which Lars puts her in regarding her affection towards, as she can break free on her own on stage. But unfortunately that doesn’t happen because the script insists Lars and Sigrit are made for each other, which they’re not. As far as chemistry goes... Sometimes they look cute, sometimes when Will Ferrell has to do his comedy shtick, as the chemistry between the two fall off.
The last time we were treated to a Will Ferrell lead comedy film, was one of the worst films released on Christmas Day... Holmes and Watson. Surely studios would be hesitant to let this man be in another lead comedy film, after that disaster. So Ferrell more than likely saw the success of Adam Sandler’s deal, despite majority of those films not being any good, as he figures he’ll just swing on over to Netflix. A major positive is Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga is indeed MUCH better than Holmes and Watson. This time around it’s a more tolerable comedy film. Unfortunately that positive isn’t that much of a praise, as I found this film to be not that good.
The films development regarding our supporting characters were poorly written. Sure they had ideas with their supporting characters, that can provide some thoughtful messages. However this film doesn’t really care to develop our supporting characters, in which they can be interesting as they can provide significance towards the story, as they rather tell us than show us. Best example is certainly Alexander Lemtov (Dan Stevens) as this character could’ve easily been a great supporting character, providing genuine and thoughtful emotion in which this film could use as it would display a powerful message. But unfortunately that was told at the very end. Rather than making this character interesting, they just played him off as a potential romantic interest for Sigrit since Lars won’t give her attention. It’s kind of a waste to be honest, you could’ve made a solid supporting character yet you choose to barely do anything with him, other than making him a cliche we’ve seen a thousand times before. Same goes to our antagonist in this film, who is barely involved with the story. He’s just hidden in the background, while he randomly makes an impact in the third act... What gives?!
The story is mediocre at best. The major problem with this story is it has a tone issue. On one hand it wants to be a sweet underdog story, on one hand it wants to be an obnoxious loud stupid comedy. When it comes to romantic stories that involve music, I honestly enjoy those. I mean this years High Note was enjoyably average, as it was cute to watch. But this film has a difficult time deciding what it really wants to be. They’ll be a couple cute moments, but they’ll be moments where we have unnecessary loud moments, where characters do nothing but scream... It’s freaking obnoxious, as it disrupts the vibe. Regarding the success of Lars and Sigrit, why can’t any of their success be actually genuine success?! Why does their success have to be accomplished by nonsense?! Especially in their third performance, where you honestly just want things to go smoothly where they somewhat earn it, but no let’s ruin this sweet performance with something stupid.
The comedic material provides a couple laughs, however the humor in this film can appear cringeworthy or obnoxious. What’s odd about the comedic material is it reoccurs the same joke, as you can sense a pattern while watching this film’s comedic formula. A strange man that appears to be a Viking sings a pop song, as I did laugh. But then it tells the same joke later on in the competition, as now we see people dressed in medieval costumes and makeup sing a pop song... You already told this joke already. Lars offending American tourists, reoccurs three times... It wasn’t funny the first time, stop telling the same joke again and again, it wasn’t funny then it won’t be funny now. Lars speaking to a dead contestant’s ghost, as it’s suppose to provide a laugh, yet it comes off completely random and totally pointless to what’s going on. For some reason it has to reoccur this same joke again... Do you get what I’m saying?! I believe this film had the potential, however struggles on what it should’ve been. That’s what happens when you correlate two different tones, that don’t blend whatsoever.
Overall, Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Sage is crap. I don’t recommend this film, either watch this years The High Note or better yet take a trip down memory lane to Music and Lyrics. -Mitch Smietana