High School Musical was one of the biggest phenomenons to come out of Disney, and 12 year old me couldn’t get enough of it. I was obsessed. Until recently I wasn’t aware that this joyful period was such a hardship for my parents to suffer through, but I won’t be apologizing for it. But does the movie hold up from age 12 to 26?
Gabriella (Vanessa Hudgens) and Troy (Zac Efron) meet at karaoke during their Christmas vacation. They sing together. Sparks fly, and they part ways only to unexpectedly meet again at East High. It isn’t long before nearly the entire class winds up in detention helping prepare for the Winter musical.
Like all high schools, everyone has a group they get stuck in. Troy’s a basketball star. Gabriella’s an academic. Once assigned to a group, they aren’t allowed to leave. They secretly audition for the musical and get a callback much to the dismay of popular snobs, Ryan (Lucas Grabeel) and Sharpay Evans (Ashley Tisdale). Much singing and dancing occurs while the student body fights to make sure that their high school caste system doesn’t collapse.
In the end, the school comes together to stop Ryan and Sharpay from sabotaging Troy and Gabriella’s shot at being cast as the leads. The movie ends in typical Disney fashion with a happy ending and catch musical number. Hopefully the students and those at home watching learn that it’s ok if you don’t fit in someone else’s box and that the world won’t end if you develop a love for something other than the interests that you had before.
I enjoyed this movie after all this time, but my enjoyment was mostly nostalgia driven with memories of a simpler time during my childhood. If I had watched it for the first time, I probably wouldn’t have enjoyed it as much. The magic has faded since my tweenie-bopper years, and the acting leaves something to be desired in some places. The songs are still fun and as catchy as ever, and the choreography is fantastic especially for Stick to the Status Quo and We’re All in This Together. If this movie was a huge part of your childhood, you’ll enjoy seeing it again. If you’ve never seen it, you’re not missing out on anything. High School Musical is now streaming on Disney Plus.
Summer’s in. School’s out! No more homework. No more musicals and no more drama. Or so the Wildcats thought.
Troy (Zac Efron) is offered a job at Lava Springs Country Club owned by Ryan (Lucas Grabeel) and Sharpay’s (Ashley Tisdale) parents and manages to get jobs for the rest of his class. This is to the dismay and outrage of Sharpay who will stop at nothing to break Troy and Gabriella (Vanessa Hudgens) up so that she can have him for herself.
She sets up Troy on the fast track to a future as a college basketball superstar, but it could end up costing him everything that’s actually important.
This sequel is fun and even better than the original when it comes to the acting. The songs are great except for Sharpay and Ryan’s duet, humu humu nuku nuku apua’a, which is one of the most painful scenes I’ve ever sat through! It’s so stupid! I Don’t Dance and Bet On It are my favorites, and Bet on it always makes me want to dramatically dance on a golf course.
Ryan’s character development is the best in the movie. I love how he’s his own person and not not Sharpay’s follower anymore.
I rated this one lower than the last based on my overall enjoyment of the movie, but it’s better than the original quality-wise. The cast managed to Work It Out, and it resulted in a fun Summer musical.
High School Musical 3: Senior Year: Bigger screen, bigger budget, bigger musical numbers. This movie came out on my 13th birthday, and my parents took me to see it. I was probably the oldest kid in the theater. The rest were somewhere between 6-10. They screamed when Troy (Zac Efron) first came on screen, and there was a row of little girls who wouldn’t shut up during the entire movie! Regardless, it was one of the best nights ever!
The Wildcats are about to graduate and amid making plans for the future, there’s always time for one last musical. This time about their senior year because living through it once isn’t enough!
Troy and Gabriella (Vanessa Hudgens) have some big choices to make, and a scholarship program could split them apart sooner than planned. Meanwhile, Troy is torn between choosing basketball or theater. It’s enough pressure to make one Scream! As always, everything works itself out in the end with a big musical number to tie everything up with a bow.
It’s the best of the trilogy. It also has the best soundtrack out of all of them. Scream and the Boys Are Back are my favorites. High School Musical was a big part of my early teens, and it was fun to rewatch. It’s hard to believe this movie came out almost 14 years ago! I feel old. (No comments, Mom or Aunt Crystal!) The entire trilogy is available to stream on Disney Plus.