Shitty Shitty Bang Bang
Last night Kitty and I went to see the stage musical adaptation of one of my favorite childhood films, "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang." The movie itself was essentially a musical, but it was developed for the screen not the stage. In fact it's kind of interesting in that it was written by Ian Fleming, the author of the James Bond series, and produced by Albert Broccoli who also produced most of the Bond movies.
The stage production, which was the traveling Broadway troupe, left a lot to be desired, IMHO. They had to change the plot around a little bit, but the cast of characters was the same as were all of the original musical numbers. The staging/scenery was beautiful. The acting was so-so with strong lead performances but a weak chorus. I had a very difficult time understanding the lyrics for the big musical numbers. The car was supposed to be one of the cast, but after it's big scene where it actually "flies" on stage, it's never seen again, not even during the ending nor curtain call. The mechanics were also a bit buggy so that sometimes when the car was supposed to be moving, the wheels weren't. Also, when the car was supposed to be stopped, the wheels kept moving.
I guess it was just too difficult to bring a movie with vast sets and sweeping vistas onto a small stage. The bits they had to cut out to make things fit made things feel too disjointed. It seemed more like "slapped-together musical numbers" as opposed to a coherent plot. Then again, when has Broadway NOT just slapped together some songs during a musical? Anyway, I felt it was a bit of a letdown. Dick Van Dyke will always be Caractacus Potts in my book.