Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga – Netflix Film Review

Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga

I have been excited for the release of Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga ever since it was announced. I just thought it was such a fantastic idea, one ripe with comedic potential, given the ridiculous and utterly camp nature of the contest itself. Sadly, the movie isn’t quite as funny as I was expecting.

Fire Saga is comprised of Icelandic musicians and childhood friends Lars (Will Ferrell) and Sigrit (Rachel McAdams). Lars has been dreaming of winning the Eurovision Song Contest since he was a child and Sigrit, easily the better singer of the duo, is basically just in it because she’s fancied Lars forever. Due to a run of good fortune, they are picked to represent Iceland at the contest in Edinburgh, Scotland, where their loyalties are truly tested.

I loved a lot of things about Eurovision. I loved the fabulous costumes, hair and make-up, the wild and wacky accents, the cheesy and tongue-in-cheek stage performances (accompanied by deliberately overproduced, forgettable pop tracks), and how it both poked fun at the annual singing extravaganza and showed clear respect for it (the company behind Eurovision were involved with the film). But I just wish it made me laugh more. It was amusing and made me smile a lot, but actual laughs were few and far between.

At just over two hours, this film is too long and loses its momentum in the final third. But it does have some excellent moments, such as the Song-A-Long – which features contestants singing covers of popular songs at a party and includes cameos from real Eurovision winners such as Conchita Wurst, Alexander Rebak, and Netta – as well as Fire Saga’s Eurovision performances, and Alexander (Dan Stevens)’ number Lion of Love, which is the most ridiculous song. It brought me so much joy watching the actor camping it up on stage, with the most obvious fake tan, ’80s hairstyle, and luxury clothing. If you can’t tell, he was my favourite actor in the whole shebang, which is a major thing to say since I love McAdams a lot. It’s just such an unexpected character for him to play.

Ferrell is exactly what you would expect him to be but less effectively funny than some of his other films. McAdams shines as the emotional heart, playing the kooky but relatable and likeable character. I was blown away by her voice until I noticed in the credits that she has help from Swedish singer Molly Sanden (Stevens also doesn’t sing his song). I was disappointed to discover that Demi Lovato wasn’t in it very much, and Pierce Brosnan, playing Lars’ father Erick, had a serious, non-singing role. I was hoping for more cheesy Mamma Mia! style action!! Also, Graham Norton, who provides commentary for the U.K.’s coverage of Eurovision, had an amusing role playing himself doing just that. He had more to do than I expected and he made me chuckle.

Eurovision isn’t the resounding success I was hoping for but it’s also not a complete failure. It may be tonally all over the place and it didn’t give me those much-needed laugh-out-loud moments, but I defy you not to have a smile plastered across your face watching some of these bonkers performances.

Streaming on Netflix from Friday 26th June 

Rating: 3/5

Trackbacks

  1. […] Hannah Wales / The World Of Celebrity: “It may be tonally all over the place and it didn’t give me those much-needed laugh-out-loud moments, but I defy you not to have a smile plastered across your face watching some of these bonkers performances.” […]

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