I am going to lay my cards on the table. I am not the greatest Take That fan. I would not even say I am a huge TT fan. But my sister is. She is the biggest fan you have ever met. So yes, I guess you can say I am a fan by proxy. Anyway I wanted to be up front with this first as to not offend any huge Take That fans. I have seen Take That live back in 2011 (I went with my sister to Wembley) and those boys sure put on a good show. I always had a soft spot for Robbie and have also seen him live, but that was decades ago now. My sister has always been a Barlow fan… you can imagine the conversations. Anyway a few years ago I took her to see a new show called The Band. It was a show based on Take That music and although there are a few changes, Greatest Days is in essence the same story.
Its about five friends in the 90’s who love a certain band. They talk about Top of The Pops in school and have posters on their bedroom walls. Debbie asks her dad for tickets to the show for her birthday and she takes her friends. It really is the greatest day of their lives. It doesn’t get better than this. Actually, the film starts in present day and has many flashbacks so we get the back story of each friend and what was going on for them. Rachel is played by Aisling Bea and she is a medical professional on a children’s ward. She gives everything to her job, has a kind and loving boyfriend but feels something is missing. A 2% she can’t quite bring herself to speak to. The younger Rachel never had an easy childhood. Her escape was ‘The Boys’. And I loved that when Rachel goes under her covers to escape her horrid childhood, The Boys are there comforting her. This speaks directly to me and my own childhood. I didn’t choose a band, I chose David Bowie, but the jist of it is still the same. Every time you need comforting, stability and to feel loved, listen to the words and the songs of your favourite artist. Her friends, Debbie, Heather, Claire and Zoe are her support too. However in present day, they haven’t seen each other for 25 years. As their stories unfold you will laugh and cry, and of course sing.
There are some fantastic production numbers. I especially loved Shine with the tap number at the airport. I even clapped this number in the cinema. I was the only one clapping but it deserved it. What a fantastic piece. What separates this from the show (which is currently touring the UK), is that with the film, certain lines of the songs feel more prominent. Feel more relevant to what is going on. Its like hearing the words for the first time again.
I love love love this film. I would go and see it again in a heartbeat and will be buying the DVD/blu ray when it comes out. Does that mean I am a Take That fan after all? I will leave that up to you, but the first thing I did when I got out of the cinema was to call my sister. She is the real Take That fan.
You know how in Mamma Mia, Benny and Bjorn have a tiny cameo? Well look out for ‘The Boys’ doing a small busking cameo. I squealed with excitement when I saw them. Okay maybe I am a bit of a Take That fan after all.
Go and see this film and the stage show. It’s the greatest new musical I have seen in years.