Sing Street is in cinemas now and it's a riot of a time - a happy and joyous movie about a teenage boy who forms a band to impress a girl in 1980s Dublin.
It's the latest from Once and Begin Again filmmaker John Carney and it follows in that vein by being chock full of music, with the cast enthusiastically singing entire songs on camera, creating music videos and the film even breaking out into a full on fantasy dance sequence at one point. And yet, the people involved don't want to call it a musical.
"Well we don’t call them musicals because that’s a dirty word!" Laughs the filmmaker during an interview ahead of the release of Sing Street in Dublin. It's a fact that there has been a decline interest in the word 'musical' even while the genre is actually in rude health, mostly thanks to animated efforts. But Carney agrees that the name fits: "But they are musicals. To me a musical is a film who’s plot is driven by the use of full songs in their entirety."
So what label do they use while working on a film like this? "Musically themed stories. Whatever euphemism!" Even the trailer for Sing Street downplays how integral the music is to every part of the film, something which was deliberate. And Carney has his own thoughts on why people are wary to call something a musical, and it's all down to personal taste.
"The bottom line is if I hate the music I’ll hate 90 percent of the film, and I don’t know if I like the music yet. If somebody said to me ‘we’re going to see a musical theatre show’ I’d need to know what the music is. Tell me what its going to be like. Because if its… Damien Rice I’m going to slit my wrists but if it’s Glen Hansard I’ll love it..."
Sing Street is in cinemas across Ireland now, and it's definitely a musical!