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NEW YORK — “Naked Boys Singing!” doesn’t take long to get around to what its title promises. The long-running theatrical musical revue is no burlesque-style tease but rather a full-length dose of the full monty. This screen version provides the added — and for its target audience, considerable — benefit of providing every viewer with the equivalent of a fifth-row center orchestra seat.
Little has been done by directors Bob Schrock and Troy Christian to adapt the material. Rather, they’ve simply lugged some cameras into the theater and filmed an onstage performance.
Thus, the highly fit and well-endowed 10-member, pardon the pun, ensemble is seen performing the show’s 16 musical numbers, here newly arranged. The general tone of the material is well indicated by such song titles as the all-too-accurate “Gratuitous Nudity,” “Members Only” and “Nothing but the Radio On.”
Although some of the ballads have more serious themes, the majority of the songs deal with such frothier topics as masturbation, anxiety in the locker room, the physical charms of the late actor Robert Mitchum and circumcision (“The Bliss of Bris”).
The songs generally are quite fun, with the contributing stamp of famed comedy writer Bruce Vilanch quite evident. And the strong-voiced performers deliver them in engaging fashion.
But ultimately the film is mainly a celebration of the penis, numerous examples of which seen here for nearly the entirety of the film’s 84-minute running time. It’s good to be able to report that, despite the frequent athleticism required by the choreography, none of the castmembers seems to have been injured.
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Zar Amir Ebrahimi
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