Gamurs and The Mary Sue logo text.

Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again Is the Delightfully Fluffy Nonsense We Desperately Need Right Now

5/5 meme-able Streeps.
This article is over 5 years old and may contain outdated information

Remember 2008? It was only a decade ago, but it already feels like a lifetime. Barack Obama was elected to the highest office in the land, making history as the first black president. Beyonce dominated the charts with a little song called “Single Ladies,” and a movie based on the wildly successful jukebox musical Mamma Mia! was released, giving us the instantly meme-able Meryl Streep doing splits in overalls. Mamma Mia! was a fun, frothy, cheesy romp that had us dancing in our seats.

Recommended Videos

Cut to 2018. All your favorite celebrities are dead, Donald Trump is president, and everything is awful. We’ve spent over two years living in a relentlessly awful news cycle. Depression and anxiety have skyrocketed because that’s what happens when the foundations of your government start to crack, and here comes Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, riding in on a white horse to save us from the trash fire we’re currently living in. This movie may not be the hero we want, but it’s the hero we need.

Mamma Mia! was not a movie that necessitated a sequel: all the storylines were wrapped up nicely, and all the hit ABBA songs were sung. Luckily, the filmmakers ignored this and gave us a life-affirming, feel-good musical extravaganza. The film follows the structure of Godfather 2, moving back and forth in time as it follows the stories of Sophie (Amanda Seyfried) re-opening her mother’s hotel and Young Donna (Lily James, in Meryl Streep’s role) making her way to Greece and hooking up with three handsome guys. The casting of the younger versions was spot-on, but Jessica Keenan Wynn deserves special props for delivering a spookily accurate imitation of Christine Baranski.

What makes the Mamma Mia! movies work is a sense of effortless fun. The cast seems to genuinely enjoy themselves, and that joy is contagious, much like the insanely catchy tunes of ABBA. Speaking of said tunes, we get some lesser known ABBA numbers in the sequel (“When I Kissed the Teacher,” “Angel Eyes”) as well as reprises of favorites like “Dancing Queen,” “Mamma Mia,” and “Waterloo.” Did I care that they were singing the same songs as the first film? Reader, I cared not. There’s just too much to enjoy about this movie to get bogged down in the details.

Cher as the deus ex grandmachina? Perfect. So what if she’s the same age as Meryl? Stellan Skarsgard’s character winning “Swede of the Year”? Makes sense to me. No one on this goddamn island using any birth control? Have fun, kids! In an increasingly tumultuous world, it feels like a luxury to be able to spend two hours in an air-conditioned movie theater, watching attractive people sing and dance on beautiful sun-kissed beaches. Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again is corny as hell, wildly entertaining, and the perfect summer respite from the real world. Give your brain a break and get lost in this goddamn delight of a movie.

(image: Universal Pictures)

Want more stories like this? Become a subscriber and support the site!

The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—

The Mary Sue is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more about our Affiliate Policy
Image of Chelsea Steiner
Chelsea Steiner
Chelsea was born and raised in New Orleans, which explains her affinity for cheesy grits and Britney Spears. An pop culture journalist since 2012, her work has appeared on Autostraddle, AfterEllen, and more. Her beats include queer popular culture, film, television, republican clownery, and the unwavering belief that 'The Long Kiss Goodnight' is the greatest movie ever made. She currently resides in sunny Los Angeles, with her husband, 2 sons, and one poorly behaved rescue dog. She is a former roller derby girl and a black belt in Judo, so she is not to be trifled with. She loves the word “Jewess” and wishes more people used it to describe her.