Here Are the Best Andrew Lloyd Webber Movie Adaptions, Based off of Rotten Tomatoes Scores
When you think of Broadway musicals, Andrew Lloyd Webber is one of the first names that comes up. Even if you don’t know his name right off of the bat, you’ve definitely heard of his musicals. From Cats to Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, the man’s musicals have gone on to be major motion pictures on top of being some of the longest-running his on Broadway.
Cats — 20%
2019’s Cats might go down as one of the most disliked movies ever and certainly was ridiculed relentlessly online. It only makes sense that it’s also the lowest-rated Lloyd Webber adaptation yet. Because of its extensive CGI (which may or may not have been creepy, depending on who you ask), it cost a lot to make. And because it was such a flop, Variety reports it lost around $100 million. Talk about yikes.
It’s also a very odd story. It’s about a tribe of cats — the Jellicles — who have to pick those among them that “ascend to the Heaviside Layer” and come back in another life.
Phantom of the Opera — 33%
Maybe a little harsh, but 2004’s Phantom of the Opera didn’t fare well with critics. The musical is about Christine, an aspiring ballerina and opera singer who receives lessons from the opera house’s Phantom. She falls in love with Raoul, from her past, but The Phantom is not having it; he wants her all for himself. Despite critics not really enjoying the film, the musical did go on to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Art Direction and then Best Original Song for “Learn to Be Lonely.”
Jesus Christ Superstar (1973) — 52%
In one of the most imaginative iterations of Jesus’ story, Jesus Christ Superstar mixe in rock music, ‘70s flair, and the desert to give fans a one-of-a-kind musical. Tim Rice also wrote this musical with Lloyd Webber and it was the highest-grossing musical of 1973 when it came out. It didn’t work as well for critics, but religious groups disliked it even more. Some Jewish people thought it was antisemitic and some Christians thought it was blasphemous. However, Pope Paul VI loved the movie and the soundtrack was his favorite, and the current Pope, Pope Francis, enjoys it too.
Evita — 63%
Evita has a very mixed bag of reviews for it, giving it a lukewarm rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Some thought the dialogue and writing were lacking, and the music is the focal point that saved the day, with several critics comparing it to a long music video. The movie stars Madonna in the titular role, along with Antonio Banderas as Ché the narrator, and Jonathan Pryce as Juan Perón.
It tells the story of Eva Perón and her journey from power Argentinian girl from a working-class family to First Lady of the nation. Despite what critics said, the movie went on to be nominated for Golden Globes and Academy Awards. It won Best Motion Picture and Best Actress in Musical or Comedy (Madonna) and Best Original Song (“You Must Love Me”) at the Golden Globes.
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat — 86%
Lastly, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is a lesser-known musical but has the highest rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Partly because it has the fewest reviews listed but it’s also a great musical. It tells another story from scripture of Joseph, who’s his father’s favorite son who also has a gift of interpreting dreams. His jealous brothers sell him to slavers who and he goes on a long journey from living in a jail cell to being the Pharoh’s right-hand man.
The movie stars Donny Osmond and several other familiar faces and features a cast of children as background singers. The movie went straight to video and has positive reviews. If you haven’t seen this slept-on Lloyd Webber musical yet, you can rent it from YouTube or Amazon.