Movie Musical Bracket

March 24, 2017

My good buddy, Mike Sheehan, and I recently recorded a podcast episode debating our favorite movie musicals since the year 2000. In celebration of March Madness, we used a bracket-style to determine the rankings, match-ups, and eventually the winner. Here is the process that went with figuring out the rankings and at the bottom is the episode. Enjoy!


This post is to explain how we came up with the movies and the rankings for our Movie Musical Bracket.

First, we needed a topic and both Mike and I love movie musicals, and statistically there weren’t too many of them to choose from. Well, that’s what we thought at first before realizing there are plenty of classic movie musicals, so to stay clear from them we decided to keep the pool of films to more recent memory. We decided to only allow movie musicals since the year 2000 to be in the bracket, but even deciding that would be a lot of work. Luckily, we found a Buzzfeed article where Louis Peitzman ranked his favorite movie musicals that were released after the year 2000.

Perfect! Until Mike realized it omitted one of his favorite movie musicals: Moulin Rouge. So we just decided to throw that film in the mix as well. So we had Moulin Rouge plus 23 of the films Mr. Peitzman had on his list as the pool of films trying so hard to make it into our bracket. Now we needed to decide how to get that list down to 8.

We decided to have an Objective Score and a Subjective Score. The Objective Score was the sum of the film’s IMDB Rating + 10% of its Rotten Tomatoes Score + the films domestic box office gross/10,000,000 (with 10 being the max score). Basically, each category’s max score would be 10, so a film’s perfect score would be 30. And we felt that the mixture of IMDB (fan voting) + Rotten Tomatoes (critic’s gauge) + Box Office (pop culture relevance) was a fair enough system.

But then we had a Subjective Score, which was our separate rankings of our favorite 8 films from the pool. We ranked them 1 through 8 and used a point system: 15 points to the 1st ranked film, 13 points to the 2nd ranked film, 11 points to the 3rd ranked film, etc. Again, the max score for any film would be 30 points.

After combining all of the scores, we had our rankings. But then we discussed our main problem: what if we disagreed with a match-up? What would the tie-breaking mechanism be? We can’t just flip a coin or have the higher seed win. So we decided that since we’re the ones debating, our rankings should matter as the tie-break. Whenever we have a tie, we would look only at the Subjective Totals and the film with the higher Subjective Score would win. If that also resulted in a tie, then the higher seed won.

And there you have it! Here are how the rankings ended up and the first round match-ups:

1. La La Land (47.7 points)
2. Les Miserables (44.5 points)
3. Once (38.6 points)
4. Moulin Rouge (35.9 points)
5. Tangled (33.7 points)
6. Chicago (30.8 points)
7. Sweeney Todd (30.2 points)
8. Sing Street (28.9 points)

1. La La Land vs. 8. Sing Street
2. Les Miserables vs. 7. Sweeney Todd
3. Once vs. 6. Chicago
4. Moulin Rouge vs. 5. Tangled

Enjoy Episode 25 of Popcorn and Pop Culture Podcast:


Review: Tangled

April 11, 2011

Tangled (2010)
100 minutes
Rated – PG
Directed by Nathan Greno and Byron Howard

Grade:  B

Disney is known for their princess stories where the girl meets Prince Charming or some other perfect guy. And then they live happily ever after. But since Pixar has secures itself as the animation kings, Disney animations haven’t been up to par for years. Fortuntely, they’re back on track with their latest princess story, Tangled.

Tangled is a story about Rapunzel, a princess who was kidnapped by Mother Gothel as a child for her magical healing powers in her hair. To remember the princess, and as a desperate attempt to reach out to her, the king and queen and the whole village release sky lanterns into the sky on her birthday every year. Rapunzel, trapped inside a tower, watches the sky lanterns in awe every year and wants nothing more than to see them up close.

Where’s the dashing gentleman that wins over Rapunzel’s heart? Well, that would be Flynn Rider, a theif who stole the princess’ crown from the village’s castle. Running away from the authorities, he accidentally finds the tower and is met by Rapunzel with a frying pan. A woozy Flynn Rider strikes a deal with Rapunzel: she’ll return the crown she hid if he takes her to see the sky lanterns. And off they go on their adventure.

What I enjoyed so much about Tangled is how it took the winning formula of past Disney films. There are heart-warming musical numbers, a princess and a sensitive outlaw, magic, a cute side-kick, a bad guy, and a moral. Although Tangled isn’t groundbreaking in any way, it’s very satisfying for children and parents as well. Let’s hope Disney can move forward from the success of Tangled.

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