Like the ridiculous notion that Ridley Scott was ostensibly toying with
a few years ago of remaking 'Citizen Kane' this re-adaptation of
'Annie' pales beside John Huston's magnificent film of this stage
However, Rob Marshall before 'Chicago' is clearly very much in charge of the theatrics, and his choreography and mise en scene is fine. The problem is simply in the casting. Almost without exception, the roles are, simply, too big for the players. In singing & dancing, Alicia Morton can stand beside Aileen Quinn, but not in charisma and screen presence. Victor Garber and, particularly, Audra McDonald slip further down the comparison ladder, as does Alan Cumming. While Kathy Bates is no Carol Burnett, however, she does give a certain gravitas to Miss Hannigan. Only improvement, as far as I can see is that Sandy makes a better mutt.
For cinephiles, also, there is a major let-down in the substitution of the anaemic 'NYC' for the sensational 'Let's go to the movies' sequence in Huston's film. All of the above notwithstanding, if we remember it is only a TV movie, with all of the budgetary implications of that, it is an honourable effort, but why would anyone want to watch this rather that Huston's minor masterpiece.
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