Thom W. (NDD#145) (8 Posts)

When he is not obsessing about his next Walt Disney World trip, Thom can be found running anything from a 5K to a 200 mile relay. Having grown up across the river from Louisville, KY, Thom's family never really took trips to Walt Disney World. He only went twice as he was growing up. Thom changed this in adulthood, though, honeymooning with his wife at Walt Disney World in 1998 and returning regularly after that. Now that he has kids of his own, his family goes at least once a year. But when they are not in the World, you can expect that Disney movies are helping them stay connected to their "laughing place." Through his experience of becoming a long-distance runner and losing almost 80 lbs., Thom hopes to help and encourage readers of The Disney Driven Life, to lead a Disney Driven Healthy and Fit life.

Copyright: Disney

Sunday is movie night in our household. This week we had Lemonade Mouth on the DVR, so we all sat down to watch it. If you have not seen the movie yet, turn back now as there will be spoilers included this review. I figured it would be a typical Disney made-for-TV musical in the mold of High School Musical. Boy, was I wrong. I thought the movie was very well made and not as predictable as most made-for-TV movies are.

As the movie starts we see a bigger than life intro to a hot new band named Lemonade Mouth, the movie then turns back time to explain how the band of 6 people came together to be performing at Madison Square Gardens. We are introduced through narration from Olivia to meet Stella, Mo, Wen, Charlie, and Olivia, herself.

The group comes together one day in detention for breaking the rules written and “unwritten” by the principal who is all about the sports image of Mesa High School. The detention is held in the basement of the high school to where the music, theater, arts, etc.. classes have been relegated. Miss Reznick is the music instructor who stumbles upon the group’s impromptu singing session. From there Stella gets the band together, and the rest, as they say, is history. The movie has its standard moments where the members have to overcome adversity to make it in the end.  I don’t want to provide a play-by-play of the movie as I feel everyone should give this movie a watch.

I feel the movie did a great job with the back story of each of the members and how they can relate to kids today.

Stella is the rebellious one who feels she can’t live up to the expectations of a successful and smart family. She fights for what she believes in.

Mo is the young Indian girl with an overbearing father who has to sneak around the rules laid upon her by her father to secretly date the popular boy.

Wen is your typical teenager whose Dad is dating a younger woman. He feels he is being overlooked because of her.

Charlie is living in the shadow of his older brother but does not want the same things his brother did.  He also has a crush on Mo, but she is involved with another boy.

Olivia lives with her Grandmother and is reclusive.  We find out she doesn’t have many friends over.

Scott is the the popular boyfriend of Mo who redeems himself in the end.

To me, the biggest surprise was finding out that Olivia’s dad is in prison and that she doesn’t talk to him. We learn that Olivia’s mom died, and, sometime after that, her dad was incarcerated. While the band did not win the contest at the end, that did not come as a surprise to me. Disney has used this approach in the past in the movie Jump-In. I was somewhat surprised Charlie didn’t get the girl in the end. Disney instead chose to go with Scott redeeming himself and Charlie moving on to someone else. The last surprise was that the narration being done by Olivia was actually a letter to her father about the band and how they came to be.

I thought the soundtrack was really good as well. It has lots of upbeat and catching tunes. If you have not seen the movie, I would highly recommend it. I don’t think you’ll regret watching it. If you have read the book the film was based from, I would like to hear your thoughts as well. I think Disney may have found itself a new franchise in the High School Musical realm.

Contributed by: Thom Whitham (NDD#145) Thom is the DDL Fitness Blogger.

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