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Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga Review


Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga – Review – The long awaited Eurovision film was released yesterday to mixed reviews from the so-called critics, but what do Eurovision fans think of it? Eurovision Times took a look on release day at the film and the response to it from the Eurovision bubble.

Icelander Lars Erickssong (Will Ferrell) has dreamt of winning the Eurovision Song Contest since seeing Abba win in 1974 as a child. Along with friend Sigrid, his accident prone and not very good band Fire Saga stands little chance. His father, Erick Erickssong played by Pierce Brosnan, is disappointed in him. By complete luck, they end up in Iceland’s Songvakeppnin national selection, where it all goes horribly but predictably wrong. By a freak accident (or is it?? Certain members of national broadcaster RUV desperately don’t want their country to win as they think they can’t afford to host the competition the following year) all the the other contestants die in an explosion including clear winner Katiana Lindsdottir, played by Demi Lovato.

Demi Lovato’s new song ‘In The Mirror’ taken from the soundtrack will be released this Friday, June 26th.

So off go Fire Saga to the Eurovision Song Contest! To a very cheap bed and breakfast as RUV don’t want to spend much money.

We can only presume some Eastern European country won last year but couldn’t host, as the contest is in Edinburgh even though it’s pointed out in the film everyone hates the UK. The foreign hosts are classic hosts and its clear Will Ferrell has been watching some of the poorer ones we’ve seen over the years!

Without spoiling it too much, the track released in advance of the film, ‘Volcano man’, isn’t actually Fire Saga’s entry for the Song Contest. We get snippets of various fake entries… Belarus have sent a Lordi-type band called Moon Fang. Greece has Mita stripping off to a figure hugging body suit. There’s over the top dancers, ridiculous props and crazy pyros, but in amongst it all some pretty catchy and decent songs!

 

There’s lots of cameo appearances starting with Salvador Sobral (Portugal 2017) busking in Edinburgh. The ‘song-a-long’ (surely this MUST become a thing in real Eurovision?!) sees lots of former contestants pop up to sing a few lines during the party at the Russian delegation’s mansion. It’s a medley of Cher’s ‘Believe’, Madonna’s ‘Ray of Light‘, ABBA’s ‘Waterloo’, Celine Dion’s ‘Ne partez pas sans moi’ and Black Eyed Peas’ ‘I Gotta Feeling’. There’s cameos from John Lundvik (Sweden 2019), Anna Obodescu (Moldova 2019), Bilal Hassani (France 2019),  Loreen (Sweden 2012), Jessy Matador (France 2010),  Alexander Rybak (Norway 2009, 2018), Jamala (Ukraine 2016), Elina Nechayeva (Estonia 2018), Conchita Wurst (Austria 2014) and Netta (Israel 2018)

Commentary in the semi final and final is more than ably supplied by the BBC’s Graham Norton with his usual scathing sense of humour which works perfectly in this film as he rolls his eyes and prepares for the worst as the hapless Fire Saga take to the stage. We even get a cameo from William from Wiwibloggs which is a nice nod to the Eurovision bloggers who make up such a huge part of the eurovision community.

A disastrous semi-final performance sees the large hamster wheel prop and both singers crashing into the audience. Is their journey at Eurovision over? In true Eurovision-style inexplicable voting from the Eastern bloc sees them through to the final, but not before much drama.

Dan Stevens steals the show for me as the camp Russian entry Alexander Lemtov, favourite to win with an over the top production (sound familiar, eurovision fans?!), and the film will please some with a subtle dig at Russian homophobia.

Canadian actress Rachel McAdams plays a very likeable Sigrid Ericksdottir, who thankfuly believes in elves, and her vocals are actually sung beautifully by Sweden’s Molly Sandén (JESC 2006, Melfest 2009, 2012, 2016).

Will Ferrell has managed to take some of the fun parts of Eurovision and incorporate it in to the film by laughing with it and not at it. He clearly loves the contest. Yes there are things that aren’t right (it’s a fictional film, we can live with it) and Pierce Brosnan will never master an Icelandic accent, but the message that the contest is more than about winning was great to see. We won’t spoil the end by announcing the winner of the contest but it wasn’t predictable, but with the help of the Icelandic elves we get a happy ending.

Whilst it is never going to win any Oscars Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga is a feel good, throwaway, silly romcom that gives a handful of laugh out loud moments, puts a smile on your face and gives Eurovision fans some in-joke moments to enjoy, as well as real bops of songs to download from the soundtrack album. ‘JaJa Ding Dong‘ is bound to become a fan favourite on the Euroclub dance floor after a few drinks.

Some critics have loved it. Johnny Oleksinski of the New York Post wrote “Will Ferrell’s “Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga” is a terribly funny send-up and the most enjoyable music industry parody since Christopher Guest’s folk satire “A Mighty Wind.”

Others however are not as kind with Chris Hewitt from Empire saying “The votes are in, and it’s official: this largely unfunny paean to Eurovision is a waste of some serious talent. At least some of the songs are decent.”

So far the film has got a rating of 58% on Rotten Tomatoes, 47% on Metacritic and 6.7/10 on IMDb. So what are Eurovision fans saying?


It’s certainly not the nil points some people were predicting, with many Eurovision fans giving it a worthy 8 or 10 points for its feel good escapism for a couple of hours. If you watch it, let us know what you think!

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319 comments on “Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga Review

  1. Another far-right nut job beat a mainstream Republican in a primary tonight.

    Meet Lauren Boebert, a gun rights activist, anti-pandemic restrictions activist, and conspiracy theorist who has promoted QAnon, who has just defeated five-term incumbent Scott Tipton in Colorado. The district is considered a probable Republican safe seat, so she will likely be elected to Congress. Scary results.

    • Sucks that the old rules, where everyone goes to the middle to get votes, no longer applies.

      Was one of the first things that was taught in political science class. If you go away from the middle, the person that stays there will hoover up votes. Now it’s all upside down.

      Now you get everyone rushing to the wings, be it left or right.

      Politics and politicians are at a low point. You are asked to choose the lesser of two evils.

      We need more political parties. Or else I will just continue to be a non voter.

      If the none of the above vote counted, 99% of candidates would lose to nobody.

      • There is no left in the USA, at least from a European perspective. Bernie Sanders would be a conservative Social Democrat or a socially inclined Conservative here in Germany.

        • Funny how here Bernie is considered the most radical person to ever grace American politics. I wonder what those people would think if they got introduced to Gloria La Riva, an actual communist.

          • Many US Americans I met thought that functioning health and social security systems were the signature of communism. One of my friends from NYC once summarized the American approach as follows: You get a heart attack one week and the marshal the next week.

            • Sad but accurate. The Cold War and Ronald Reagan have made Americans absolutely terrified of anything deemed socialist or communist, and to Americans that includes healthcare for all. Next thing we’re gonna see public education get demonized.

        • You can also tell me what happened to Natália Kelly while you are at it. Haha

      • I have long wished for a multiparty system. I definitely don’t feel as if the Democrats truly represent me, and I have no party loyalty to them if their selected candidate does not represent my views. The Republicans are another story,,, I don’t think they can ever nominate a candidate who represents me.

        • Politics in 2020:

          Via nbc news:

          “Boebert won after a campaign in which she accused Tipton of not being sufficiently pro-Donald Trump even though the president had endorsed Tipton, and even though Tipton is the Trump campaign’s co-chair for Colorado.”

          But this is not a surprise. It’s a pushback by the voters after all they’ve seen. Extremists get voted in. Not that the dems don’t have their share in the Dem states.

          If we had a decent system, for example, Trump would not be allowed to run for re-election and his opponent isn’t an 80 something career politician that had 40 years in office to make things better, but just went with what was popular at any time. The definition of a career bureaucrat.

          Sad for the citizens. And bad for the citizens.

        • It looks like The Economist agreed with me re the center.

  2. Instead of being asleep, I fired up the 2013 ESC album. AKA the one with the all time great all female top 6. 6 different languages as well.

    Wish they would all return. Well, one of them did. And she wore the crown fantastically!

    Which brings up a question: What ever happened to Natália Kelly? I’m sure one of the experts here will know. Cmon experts, don’t let me down now.

  3. Just finished watching the film and it was actually okay and had some very funny moments and lines. The songs were spot on and quite amusing. Not as awful as I thought it would be nor what some folk have said. It’s daft but fun and yes they did make a number of errors but I am sure they were intentional so don’t to take it seriously and if you do then I suggest you need to lighten up. I have certainly seen a lot worse.
    The Andrew Lloyd Webber funded Eurovison themed musical in London springs to mind. Closed after one week lol.
    A side note. I had to take a double take of Salvador Sobral busking his winning song. He looked so like Dino! Beard and woolly hat on point. That really did make me laugh.
    Glad to see it is doing well and that the ‘critics’ reviews have been swept away with more people liking it than not.
    It is a bit too long but still worth a look.
    Not great but not awful. It gets a 7/10 from me.

    • Going in with zero expectations is the way to go. Worked for me as well.

      Most people here are going to watch it anyway because of the subject matter, so they should have expectations tempered.

      2 hours was a bad idea no matter how you look at it.

      I’m curious to see what my friends think about it when they see it. They are familiar with the contest because of me, and I have trained them well; they are all big fans of Apricot Stone, and the females of Azerbaijan. I’m spreading the ESC gospel. Haha

      • Exactly.
        You are doing a great job too! 😊

        • Haha. One man can make a difference.

          Btw, Ireland was my #1 for the second consecutive year. Leslie is awesome!

          She is great with her fans. She accepted my Facebook friend request in her personal account, which is always better than her fan account. So now I doubled my ESC artists as friends, as I already have Krista. I’m expanding the empire. Haha

          • Fabulous. She is a true sweetie. I also liked the song this year and was hopeful for surprise but sadly we won’t know for sure.
            Glad you also loved last year’s too. I think we must have been part of the few who did and I loved the whole staging whatever people say (and the result)
            Keep it going. I have Niamh Kavanagh on my phone list as she visits Donegal a lot and I did a show with Donna and Joe a few years back (don’t
            ask lol) We can look forward to seeing who else joins our esteemed lists 😆

            • Nice.

              There we are: the 2 people that liked Ireland last year. Haha

              You know how I feel about Ireland. I made it clear many times that they are criminally underrated. Since 2011, I was probably in the arena for the worst entry of the bunch.

              Hasn’t been a bad one in ages. Can’t even pick who was ripped off the most. Molly has the biggest case I think.

              And I am fortunate since Leslie and her wife have a place in NYC. We already spoke about meeting when things get going again. I’ll take a few photos. It’s gonna be an absolute blast for sure.

            • I think there were a few who thought Molly should have made it, that was a big pity for sure and she came close.
              Please do keep us posted when you meet Leslie and her wife, that will be fun for certain. 🤩

            • It’s gonna be a blast, I’m sure of it. And I’m figuring it will be the first time I ever been to a venue where the artist out drinks the fans. Haha

              Btw, what did she release today? A complete gem of a track.

            • Lol, most likely, though am sure you will give it go!
              I worked at WOMAD festival for a few years at Reading and one year back stage, we finished our day’s work and spent a few hours in the glorious sunshine drinking in the company of Chrissie Hynde who proceeded to drink everyone under the table. Fierce lady, loved her 🤩
              Haven’t heard Leslie’s new song, will check it out.
              Cheers Alex 😊

            • I have to, can’t come back and say Leslie outdrank me. I got my pride. Haha

            • Just listened to it and I really like it! 🙂

            • It’s great.

              She is very talented. But I already knew that a few months ago.

  4. ETSC news since it’s officially July! Registration will be sunday at 8pm cet: an article will recap the schedule tonight!

  5. Where I will be in three weeks time. Things are so hectic and unpleasant at work, I can’t wait:

    https://www.greeka.com/ionian/corfu/photos/greeka-photos-1/

  6. On 21st I will be in Foça/Izmir

    In August I am taking my dad to Lviv (flights finally started today) 🧿

    • I would like to visit it jointly with Krakow.

      • Krakow is great but I am not sure we can do it during pandemic.. We will be traveling within Ukraine, will visit Kiev and finally Kharkiv.. I haven’t been to Kharkiv before

  7. Bit long in parts with unnecessary padding and some parts didn’t make sense if you are a Eurovision fan (voting segment during the semi final) but overall a great tribute to our contest and a decentish replacement for not having the actual contest itself this year.

    Lemtov was fantastic, great nod to Sergey

  8. Elvana must be grinning

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