Monday, November 15, 2010

Ain't No Party Like An S Clone Party

Cloning? S Club? A movie featuring both? Not since Kiss Meets the Phantom of the Park has there been a compelling movie about global domination, doppelgangers and advances in technology using pop stars. Well, technically, there still had not been until Simon Fuller decided that the world needed an S Club movie in which the pop group is cloned into popbots. Yeah, I said that.

Seeing Double features S Club as S Club, a touring pop group in need of a break after promoting their newest album through a performance, interview and traveling filled montage. Before their trip to the U.S., the group's manager is knocked out and kidnapped, which leaves S Club on their own and to be awoken by the Hannah alarm alerting them the impending danger of having a song on a Now, That What I Call Music compilation and and variations of S Club (S Club Juniors/S Club 8).

S Club sees this as their manager pulling a prank on them by abandoning them while Rachel sees this as a chance for the group to have a day off montage that would make Ferris Bueller jealous. Who needs stealing your best friend's father's sports car, lying to get your girlfriend out of school, singing on parade floats, art galleries and pretending to be Abe Froman, "sausage king of Chicago," when you, depending on the S Club member, could shop, go to a spa, eat ice cream, sleep, explore the city and its art galleries, eat grapes and try on hats. Clearly, Bueller, you are outmatched as are S Club because they soon find out they are broke and performing live in Los Angeles despite being in Spain. Oh snap!

Being broke and in S Club provides the members zero perks as they find themselves stuck in a Spanish dungeon. The only way to escape is through a song and dance number where the prisoners get in on the action. The next thing you know, it looks like the Soul Train line but in a Spanish dungeon.

Huzzah! S Club manages to escape, find their manager's assistant and head to Los Angeles for a six-on-six battle royal of epic pop proportions. Okay, maybe not but they do stalk and hunt down their clones in a game of pop survivalist. Alright, this does not happen either. They do, however, find their clones and swap out three of them with of their human versions to better figure out what is going on only to find out that they do not have navels, live on a steady diet of gelatin and, best of all, shower together. 

Meanwhile, the clones taken to live the human S Club counterparts are taught about boomerangs, Pepsi, hot dogs and the beach through the magical lesson of montage. At this point, I think we are on the third at this point, not counting the full on musical numbers. Remember, singing and dancing do not constitute a montage, it is the lessons learned during the montage that make the montage.

As the real versions of Hannah, Jon and Rachel are soon discovered among the clones, they are then taken to the birthplace of the clones, a castle inhabited by Dr. Victor Gaghan. Bradley, Tina and Jo realize something is not right as the other real S Club members never returned and head toward the castle. What is never explained is how a former college professor obtained and afforded a castle? That, in itself, is rooted in science fiction more than the film itself. Seriously, it is a huge castle on a mountain in California based off of the former salary of a former college professor. On that note, let's break down the contents of said castle...

- Containment units to house several celebrity clones as they are being developed.
- A laboratory.
- Equipment for said laboratory.
- Staff to feed the clones and keep some resemblance of order in castle.
- Utilities. A castle of that size and all of the experiments performed there has to be expensive
- Retinal scanners to keep out all solitictors and trick or treaters.
- One of those crazy Dyson vacuums with the pivot ball.
- Sharks with friggin' laser beams because every evil castle should have those. Instead, this castle has poisonous snakes and spiders. See what happens when you cut corners.

As I said, there is no way a former college professor could ever afford this place or be able to keep it running past 10 minutes. Anyway, I am moving off the point which is the capturing of the real S Club by Dr. Gaugin and his whole purpose for it. Simply put, the man is lonely and celebrities never gave him the time of day. Then, create clones of current and deceased celebrities as a means for companionship, financial gain and global domination. 

I will admit that I am a lonely guy but even my small amount brilliance could never dream of a plan on this scale. For me, it is more like "I am lonely, ooh, I finally found that Wilco CD I lost" but this man is a genius. Granted, he is a genius who was fired from his teaching position due to cloning experiments, but, nonetheless, a genius worthy of being a James Bond antagonist or in this case, S Club.

After being captured and forced to eat with the other clones, the real Jo and Bradley convince the clones to revolt against their master which prompts the doctor and his assistant to trigger the castle's self-destruct function which is just a lever in a box casually sitting on a wall. Oh no, a self-destructing castle with S Club inside, you what that means, it is time for a musical number. How else would you easily disarm the castle? Walk over to the wall and use the lever? I think not.

With that number and the assistance from a clone of Michael Jackson, the evil doctor is defeated and arrested despite his advancements in science, no matter how selfish they were. S Club, in turn, becomes equally as selfish to their clones by paying them in boomerangs, navel piercings they can not use and refusing to let them shower with each other while on tour. Now, that is truly evil.

This film was the end for S Club as they disbanded soon after the release of this film. After four TV series, several hit albums and singles, this is not a bad way to end it all. Sure, it has plenty of plot holes and is really, really cheesy but it is nowhere near as bad as Spiceworld (the other Simon Fuller pop group related film) and that movie had Emma Bunton (Baby Spice...oh, yeah). Still, one can not help but want something more from this film such as a brief cameo from former member Paul Cattermole, a nod to the LA 7 or Hollywood 7 series or more of the Rachel Stevens, Hannah Spearitt and Tina Barrett shower scene. Perhaps, a Gaghan could have made a better plan of using the S Club Juniors to hunt and snipe the regular S Club members like in Predators or Surviving the Game. 

Looking back, I wonder how S Club feels about this film and more to the thought about what would they score or rate the film now.

Really, S Club? I would think you look at the film more fondly than that. It has a shower scene, a mad scientist, an affordable castle in a nice mountain view, popbots and is, technically, a glorified music video. With that said, S Club, what do you think of the film now?

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