‘Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga’ Film Review by the Aussievision Team
We may not have had the Eurovision Song Contest we had hoped for this year, but we definitely got a version of it with the release of ‘Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga’!
Netflix have released the long awaited Eurovision film by Gary Sanchez / Gloria Sanchez Productions in association with the EBU (European Broadcasting Union). If you haven’t already heard about it the film is a feel-good comedy about two Icelandic small-town singers Lars Erickssong (Will Ferrell) and Sigrit Ericksdottir (Rachel McAdams), who together form the duo Fire Saga. They get an opportunity of a lifetime to represent Iceland at the Eurovision Song Contest, where high stakes, scheming rivals and onstage mishaps test their bond.
You can check more about the film here.
So what do the Aussievision team think of the film!
Some members of the Aussievision team have watched and reviewed the film, each giving it a score out of five stars. Overall the team gave the film an average of just below ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️, 3.69 to be precise. That is a thumbs up. There are a few die-hard fans in the group and some not so much. Check out the teams' comments and scores below in order of favourable to least favourable reviews:
WARNING : SPOILERS!!
Adrian - ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
The Eurovision 2020 season has been saved. Congratulations to Will Ferrell and Rachael McAdams for a fun movie, which maintains the integrity of the contest and is a lot of fun. Some great scenery, including several scenes shot along Cockburn Street, Victoria Street and the Royal Mile in Edinburgh – around 20 miles from me. Oh and it seems the ‘Eurovision arena’ is actually in a graveyard, around the corner from Edinburgh Castle.
This will be a cult classic, memorable for all the right reasons and I want Fire Saga to play Ja Ja Ding Dong! PLAY JA JA DING DONG!
Oh and Belarus should’ve won! – (Just saying based on the 10-15 second clip.) “We’re running with the wolves, we’re running with the wolves”. 5 stars out of 5 without a doubt.
Ann - ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ It is very funny and so much what the Eurovision atmosphere is really like. It isn’t a serious cerebral movie but one that is fun, silly and full of feel good moments. Underneath the sequins and hairspray is the true story of Eurovision- national pride, chasing your dreams and the importance of family. Whether it is the Eurovision family or blood family, it is what keeps the artists going when everything seems a massive hurdle...or in this case, a massive hamster wheel! 5 + points from me!
Kyriakos - ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I bloody loved it!! I have watched it several times already. I had no expectations of the film going into it, but I throughly enjoyed it. It is great that Eurovision can poke fun at itself. It is just what Eurovision fans needed this year. The highlight of the film for me was the sing-along, great energy, and the final big performance, amazing! Also great acting from Dans Stevens, Pierce Brosnan and Rachel McAdams.
I loved the message of the film that no matter what follow your heart and be true to yourself, I almost shed a tear with the twist at the end.
Ally - ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2
Before watching the movie, I didn’t have high expectations. Will Ferrell was in it, and the only other work I had seen him in was very cringy, and so I feared the potential cringe fest I was about to watch. Thankfully in the end, although the movie was cringy, it was not the movie’s fault. Let me explain. I found the movie cringy only because I am such a diehard Eurovision fan, and I cringed at how unrealistic the Eurovision contest in the movie was compared to a real Eurovision. In saying that, there were times were there were things said that I laughed at because I was able to draw parallels to the real contest, and I was delighted at the appearance of Eurovision stars. The general public will get excited by the fact that the likes of Will Ferrell, Rachel McAdams and Pierce Brosnan are in it, but I was so excited when I saw the likes of Alexander Rybak, Elina Nechayeva and Jamala in the movie.
Overall, as much as I didn’t appreciate how cringy it was, I still loved the movie and I would highly recommend anyone, Eurovision fan or not, to watch the film.
Ford - ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
The Story of Fire Saga does for the Eurovision Song Contest what Blades of Glory did for figure skating and what Talladega Nights did for NASCAR. It’s by no means a 100% accurate representation of the contest we all know and love, but a comedy designed to make the audience laugh, with a spattering of familiar faces that will give Eurovision fans something to get excited about and recognise.
My favourite moment from the movie: Singing in Icelandic.
Mike - ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ As a Eurovision fan I tried to keep an open mind about how Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga would play out and I’m glad I did. To be honest, I found it surprisingly enjoyable. Even LOL at times! There’s MORE than enough Eurovision references that only “real fans” (whoever they are) will ‘get’ and find enjoyable. These balance out the clearly flimsy plot and sub-plots that are meant to appeal to those that aren’t as familiar. Who this also needs to appeal to.
Perhaps this movie even panders to the already converted too much. Let’s face it. They could’ve parodied the Contest much more and perhaps should have!
If this is the doorway to mass appeal in the USA and markets beyond, I’m fine with it! Just don’t start applying for tickets!! Surprisingly loved it.
Jade - ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I couldn’t have asked for a better Eurovision comedy! Netflix really made the effort to have as many cameos for a eurofan’s delight while creating something that is so lightheartedly funny and bizarre to encapsulate the contest as quickly as possible for the casual viewer. JA JA DING DONG INDEED!
Guy - ⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2
From the trailers it looked like this film was going to be treading a thin line. Would the characters be over played with over the top accents like Sasha Baron Cohen characters – a type of comedy that the world has moved on from. Would it perpetuate the stereotype that there isn’t much more to the contest than novelty songs and kitsch – A reputation that the contest has grown out of.
The characters were a little over played, and I think it would have been funnier if they dialled them down a couple of notches rather than relying on that aspect for some of the humour. And yes, the songs in the film were completely over the top, but it felt like they were written well and landed more as an affectionate homage to Eurovision clichés, and the stage performances provided some of the best moments in the film. It also has to be mentioned that Molly Sandén provided some stunning vocals on the soundtrack. The cameos were also a lot of fun, and the ‘Song-A-Long’ in particular was three minutes of pure joy. So the best thing to do is go with it, don’t over think the aspects that don’t make sense in the real Eurovision world, and enjoy it for the fun that it is.
Laura - ⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2
While I don’t think this is the best Will Ferrell movie, ‘Eurovision: The Story of Fire Saga’ is a delightful romp that Eurovision fans can enjoy. It’s clear that the team behind this movie have put a lot of thought into this heartfelt comedic tribute to Europe’s biggest music contest, capturing the essence of why fans love Eurovision.
Although I think the movie would have benefited from some of its humour being less restrained by making some parts of the contest and Fire Saga’s journey even more over-the-top, one of the highlights of this film is the music. 'Ja Ja Ding Dong' is a bop and 'Husavik' is another fantastic, touching song.
I would highly recommend watching the film with friends, as it adds to the experience, even if in these times, this means everyone watching it on Netflix at the same time while having a group chat going.
Wade - ⭐️⭐️⭐️1/4
Genuinely entertaining and wholesome, with fun cameos and references.
Some visual and story choices may irk those who're sticklers on the rules of the contest.
Dale - ⭐️⭐️⭐️ The movie isn’t so much a love letter to the contest, but a big sloppy wet kiss. As a Eurovision fan I was pleasantly surprised at the underlying love shown to the contest with well executed parodies, surprisingly enjoyable music and in jokes aplenty that actually had me laughing out loud (the Songvakeppnin artists, UK description and American comparison to a reality show my favourites).
As a movie lover, let’s be honest, it wasn’t great. Pacing issues saw minute detail spent on one scene then rushed over parts that were integral to the plot. There were far too many subplots (with what, three “villains”??) and pointless scenes that just added to a clunky storyline. I found myself struggling to care about the main characters and their ending, while Dan Stevens as Alexander Lemtov stole the show (which is probably why I was rooting for Russia the whole time). Overall, the movie was a pleasant surprise that Eurovision fans will enjoy.
Emma - ⭐️⭐️⭐️
There’s a lot to like about Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga – it has a soundtrack that sounds like it could be from Eurovision itself, a great cast and is beautifully filmed. There’s no denying it’s aimed at existing fans of the show. The cameos from past contestants are a highlight and even a well known commentator and Eurovision blogger have small roles. This makes some of the technical errors harder to forgive – any Eurovision fan will notice when there are too many people on stage or a semi final voting sequence includes every participating country (to name just a couple).
There are some genuine laugh out loud moments such as Iceland’s over the top Semi Final performance but most of the focus is on the romantic tension (or lack thereof) of the main characters rather than the contest itself. Given the running time of over two hours, there was a missed opportunity for the storyline to explore some of the contest’s history which is limited to some brief footage of Abba winning the contest in 1974. An enjoyable movie for existing Eurovision fans but not funny or inspiring enough to attract new ones.
Liv - ⭐️⭐️
I found the pseudo-nondescript Norse and Eastern accents really painful to listen to. They tried I guess. I am grateful they have shone a light on our contest and might expand it's reach although I'm not convinced that people would walk away with a positive impression of Eurovision after watching the movie if they knew nothing about it beforehand. It has some fun one-liners but otherwise it's a mess. Sorry.
Miles - ⭐️⭐️
I wasn’t a huge fan of the film, to be honest. I just felt like it didn’t have anything meaningful or insightful to say about the Contest (or the people who compete in it), while everything that actually had something to do with the Contest seemed like it was thrown in as a lukewarm afterthought.
Will Ferrell and Rachel McAdams were an unlikely yet likeable duo, but the rest of the film was deeply forgettable. And if there’s one thing that Eurovision never is and never should be, it’s forgettable.
Do you agree with the team? What score would you give the new Eurovision film out of ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️! Let us know in our socials.