You've heard your kids talk about High School Musical and its sequel, and you've probably noticed a commercial or two for the latest installment, HSM3, set to be released in theatres this fall.
But what exactly are thousands of teens and teens across America supposed to do from now through October 24? You can keep your kids entertained for at least a few hours with the Deluxe Dance Edition of HSM2, set to release on DVD an entire month earlier, on September 23.
Looking back to HSM1
If you've never bothered to watch the films with your kids, you might feel a little lost. The really short recap of the first film: A boy and a girl from different worlds -- or you know, cliques -- meet and fall in love. Think West Side Story in a high school in Albuquerque, but with cell phones instead of knives. (Don't worry, they can be just as deadly of a weapon.) No one dies -- this is Disney! -- besides, love triumphs in the end.
Which brings us to High School Musical 2, when the kids are on summer vacation, except they're spending it working at a country club owned by the Evans family. So who are they? Well, Ryan and Sharpay Evans (Lucas Grabeel and Ashley Tisdale) made their debut in the first film, where the brother and sister tried their darndest to break up the happy Troy and Gabriella (Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens) -- and steal their roles in the school show.
So now Sharpay is calling the shots by virtue of her daddy's deep pockets. She's turning up the heat on Troy by throwing money and opportunities at him, hoping not only to destroy his relationship with Gabriella, but to separate him completely from all his old friends.
All right, once you know the story, and since your kids know every word by heart, why should you bother with the Deluxe Dance Edition DVD? Click here to take a peek at the trailer and you'll start to understand. The dance numbers in these films will make you sit up and take notice. And your kids are already trying to master the moves -- so give them a little help.
Deluxe Dance Edition
The Deluxe Dance Edition features an interactive dance-along that will let your kids break down the steps and dance like the stars they know they are. The DVD also contains a virtual scrapbook, deleted scenes and, of course, the all-important HSM3 preview.
And there's more about this film that makes it one worth having in your library. It's a great story featuring actors your kids already admire and look up to -- and it's rated G, so it's all appropriate for them to see. And there are some fantastic moments that will have you laughing through a few tears, muttering about allergies as you swipe at your eyes, like the big break up scene, when Gabrielle tells Troy that maybe one day they'll find a way to be together, but for now, she has to go -- and then she gets in her mother's minivan. Or when Troy comes back to his friends, not knowing whether they'll take him. "Brothers fight," he says to his best friend, Chad (Corbin Bleu). "But they're still brothers," Chad says. Honestly, if it doesn't move you, you just don't have a heart.
It's the dance elements that make the High School Musical movies so spectacular. If you're not at least tapping your feet along with the beat, well, then, maybe you're also missing some soul. It'd be more surprising, frankly, if you didn't sneak a peek at the dance-along when your kids aren't around to laugh at your efforts. It's that much fun.
Preorder HSM2: Deluxe Dance Edition from Disney and get a free ticket to see HSM3 in theatres.