When your job is to review movies, you can sometimes fall into the category of being a “cynical movie critic”. I say this because some films were not meant to be taken so seriously. I was going to take Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga very seriously. Originally, I had planned on criticizing it for attempting to be Tenacious D in The Pick of Destiny mixed with Glee. I had planned on asking if Will Ferrell was too old for these kinds of movies and how much money did they have to pay Rachel McAdams and Pierce Brosnan to be in this. I was going to ponder if Zoolander was the last great ridiculous movie and maybe Ferrell’s last great films were Talladega Nights and Anchorman.
Don’t Judge It Too Quickly
Then, the movie continued and I found myself lightening up. Even to the point where I was smiling and going “not bad”. The Eurovision Song Contest is a massive event that is probably enjoyed to the degree of the World Cup. It’s huge. So, it makes sense that Icelandic residents Lars Erickssong and Sigrit Ericksdóttir (Ferrell and McAdams) have aspirations of competing in the event. Admittedly, Lars isn’t fantastic, but Sigrit is wildly talented. And…well, I really actually liked the songs featured.
The movie was riddled with Icelandic quirks and took fun little jabs at American tourists. The costumes were wild and there were some over the top music numbers. Ferrell and McAdams played really well off each other and I was surprised of how committed McAdams was in her role. Brosnan and Ferrell had a father-son relationship that reminded me of Zoolander and admittedly, even that worked.
Dan Stevens is Always Great
The best part of the film was Dan Stevens as Russian competitor Alexander Lemtov. It was with his character that the movie actually made a poignant point and even had a touching moment. I enjoyed the moments between McAdams and Stevens. Ferrell’s acting was not obnoxious and while he may have seemed ridiculous in those costumes at first, he did fit in well with the film. I also liked all of the references to Vikings and elves since you know…it’s Iceland.
The movie had some really heartfelt moments and while it still isn’t my favorite Ferrell film (and it was a bit strange seeing such serious actors in this movie), I judged it too soon when it started. Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga is available on Netflix and I would suggest watching it to decide what you think about this musical comedy.
Editors Note: Rachel McAdams is so good in this film and she really has great chemistry with Will. I hope we see a sequel or these two working together again soon. As Tia said Dan Stevens is terrific and the music is really catchy. Even if you walk away disliking this movie something tells me you will be humming “Lion of Love” and “Double Trouble”. The cameo by Graham Norton is always a breath of fresh air. There is also a cameo by Natasia and Jamie Demetriou, Demi Lovato has some funny moments, and several actual Eurovision musicians.
A girl with too many fandoms to count.