When it comes to entertainment, nothing quite comes close to music and dance, which explains why musicals continue to be so popular to this day. For people who love music, musicals can be a wildly enthralling experience. While most Bollywood movies are indeed musicals by definition, Hollywood musicals hit slightly different, probably because they’re a whole genre. It’s fun and exciting to watch your favourite actors dance their heart out silly, especially when you’ve never seen them do that before. With that, we bring you our list of the 15 best Hollywood musicals that you must watch right away.
Set in the 1920s, Chicago follows the story of Velma and Roxie. Velma has just murdered her husband and sister after finding them in bed together. Roxie, on the other hand, is an aspiring performer who cheats on her husband with a man named Casely who promises her that he has connections that can make her famous. When he confesses to her that he cannot help her and only wanted to sleep with her, she murders him. Both women hire a lawyer named Billy Flynn, who goes to every length to clear their names.
2. A Hard Day’s Night
For anyone not living under a rock, the name The Beatles rings a bell. The Beatles were one of the greatest rock bands of all time, and had hundreds of thousands of fans. But one thing that many gloss over is the fact that The Beatles also appeared in several movies, and were pretty talented actors as well. A Hard Day’s Night is the first Beatles movie, and follows the band as they travel to Liverpool to perform at various concerts. However, they soon find that their drummer, Ringo Starr, has gone missing.
3. Wizard of Oz
Easily one of the best Hollywood musicals of all time, The Wizard of Oz follows Dorothy, who, along with her dog, Toto, is whisked away after a tornado hits Kansas, and finds herself in the magical land of Oz. She travels to Emerald City to meet the Wizard, and along her way befriends a tin man, a scarecrow, and a lion. Upon meeting the Wizard, the group is asked by him to bring him the broom of the Wicked Witch of the West.
4. Mary Poppins
After his children run away looking for a kite, George decides to hire a strict, no-nonsense nanny to set his children straight and puts out an ad that says the same. His children, however, float an ad of their own, asking for a kind, sweet nanny. The next day, a nanny by the name of Mary Poppins who has magical powers arrives at George’s doorstep.
5. West Side Story
When Maria and Tony fall in love, they find themselves in the middle of a bitter gang war between their families. Inspired by Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, the movie follows the story of these star crossed lovers who struggle to make peace between their families.
Cabaret follows the story of Sally Bowles (played by Liza Minelli), who’s a cabaret dancer at the Kit Kat club in Berlin. The film details her romantic endeavours against the backdrop of Germany getting radicalized by the Nazi party. With Minelli’s spectacular performace, Cabaret is one of the best Hollywood musicals one can watch.
Tracy has always wanted to be a performer, and her dream comes true when she is selected to appear on a TV show. However, she is bullied because of her size and political views.
In Australia on vacation, Sandy and Danny are entangled in a whirlwind love affair, believing that they’ll never meet each other again after they part ways. However, they meet again.
9. The Sound of Music
Julie Andrews stars as Maria, a young Austrian woman training to be a nun who is sent to the household of one captain Von Trapp, who has been raising his seven children on his own after the demise of his wife. Maria soon becomes close to the children as well as the Captain, but when Austria is annexed by the Third Reich, the family must escape their homeland in order to achieve safety.
10. Beauty and the Beast
One of Disney’s most memorable musicals, Beauty and the Beast has some undeniably catchy songs that stay put in your head for days. The movie follows the story of Belle, a young woman who lives in a French village with her father. When her father is kept hostage by a Beast in a castle, she tells him to release him and keep her captive instead. Once at the castle, the Beast and Belle form an unlikely friendship.
11. Pitch Perfect
After the Barden Bellas, an acapella group, spectacularly lose the annual championship to their male rivals because of a very public mishap, they find it difficult to recruit new members. Eventually they form a group consisting of misfits and nerds who struggle to work as a team together.
Based on the life of Elton John, Rocketman follows the legendary singer’s life, retelling his struggle as a child in a broken family, his coming to terms with his sexuality, and an eventual drug addiction.
13. Bohemian Rhapsody
Though not strictly a musical (as most of the songs are not performed by the actors), Bohemian Rhapsody is still worth a watch just because of how powerful Queen’s music is. The movie follows the life of British rockstar Freddie Mercury as he struggles with his sexuality and indulges in a promiscuous lifestyle even as his career takes off wonderfully.
14. Mamma Mia!
Mamma Mia follows the story of a young girl named Sophie who is about to get married. Sophie was raised by her single mother, Donna, and has always wanted to know who her father is. When she finds her mother’s old journal vaguely detailing sexual encounters with three men one of whom could be Sophie’s father, Sophie invites them all to her wedding.
15. La La Land
La La Land follows the love story of Sebastian and Mia, two struggling artists trying to make it big in the city of Los Angeles. While Sebastian is a Jazz pianist, Mia is an aspiring actress. The film throws light on how a couple can nurture each other’s dreams while their ambition can also become a force that tears them apart.
Which of these best Hollywood musicals have you already watched and what do you wish to watch next? Comment below to tell us!