Jukebox musical was something I hadn’t heard of before but find it has been in use since the 1940s so I’m way behind the times. It describes a musical based on the songs of normally one singer or a single group like the Beatles and Hard Days Night. The story line doesn’t always have to have a great deal to do with the singer or singers but most of the successful ones do.
The most successful one was Mamma Mia based on the music of ABBA as was the movie and since then film makers having been trying to replicate the formulae.
The latest off the blocks is Walking on Sunshine and it is in this blog because it is set entirely in the Salento region in Puglia. So we have a feel good film packed cram full of 80s hits by various artists, based in an exotic Mediterranean location and a storyline the revolves around a wedding. Ring any bells ? Well it will if you have seen Mamma Mia !
Taylor (Hannah Arterton) flies to Italy to discover that her sister Maddie (Annabel Scholey) is planning to marry Raf (Giulio Berruti), the Italian with whom Taylor had a holiday romance three years earlier. Wow what a plot.
It seems the film maker believing that every male would be hunkered down in front of a TV set surrounded by cans of beer, take away curry cartons and packets of crisps watching the World Cup came up with what they have called a “Chick jukebox musical movie “. Unkindly perhaps many say that most women are sitting in the other chair with a large glass of wine so it was a good time to dump the film out there and hope no one noticed it, so would rent the DVD in the winter.
Will it do for Salento what Mamma Mia did for Skopelos ( ruin it probably) well thankfully not. The reviews aren’t great and many downright rude. However all the reviewers ( it seems all movie reviewers in the UK are now female by the way) agree on one thing Giulio Berruti is an hunk:
certainly the girl in the blue bikini thinks so.
Guess we better have a look at the trailer
Go on admit it you wouldn’t mind seeing it and singing along with all those hits would you ?
The real stars of the film are apparently the locations. Lecce features in many scenes especially the Piazza Del Duomo and many of the narrow streets in the Centro Storico .
All the beach stuff is filmed at the Lido Coco Loco at Torre San Giovanni on the Ionian Sea side of the heel. Now if you are like me and think Ionian has to do with Corfu and the Ionian Islands well you’re right but that is the Adriatic Sea. The Ionian Sea is on the Taranto side. I haven’t been to the Lido but understand it is really nice. Mind you at €12 for an umbrella per day it probably needs to be. The Lido is where one of the show stopper ( their words) scenes takes place as Hannah Arterton sings Whitney Houston’s song ” How Will I Know”
The old town of Nardo features as well. The area is famous for tomato growing so why not invent a tomato festival based on Spain’s Tomatino. Well at least the cast gets to throw toms and the hunk gets all his gear off.
The Wedding scene is also in Nardo at the church of San Antonio and San Teresa .
The Vespa drive that you saw in the trailer is along the coast between Santa Caterina and Santa Maria al Bagno just outside of Nardo. Both are pleasant holiday towns and full of Italian tourists from the north in the season.
Well I’m off to the sofa where a beer awaits and the Argentina Belgium game has just started. Wow Argentina have scored already.