A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this music.
What parents need to know
What's the story?
There's a plot twist in the HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL 3: SENIOR YEAR SOUNDTRACK, as the wholesome, talented East High crew faces graduation and the scary future beyond. Even though they're as predictable and squeaky-clean as ever, the HSM 3 songs do deal with some real-life hard stuff, like facing separation from a sweetheart and uncertainty about what the future may hold.
Is it any good?
With Disney's usual high production standards and through-the-roof energy level, the cast delivers another dozen flawlessly performed songs in a variety of styles. A basketball championship game, a prom, and (go figure) a high school musical provide enough material to drive the plot, and the bits of over-the-top schlock even seem appropriate, not unlike the messages people write in each others' yearbooks.
Particular highlights include Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, and Ashley Tisdale's excellent performances and the song "A Night to Remember," which is a delightful peek at the frantic excitement of preparing for the prom.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about all the hype surrounding this CD -- and the High School Musical franchise in general. Do you think the early release singles ("Now or Never", "I Want It All") were designed to make you want to buy the whole CD and/or see the movie more? Did it work? Was the CD worth the wait? Families can also talk about "A Night to Remember," a funny song that describes getting ready for the prom from both the boy's and the girl's point of view. How do you prepare for an exciting night out?