High School Musical 3: Senior Year finds the East High School gang facing new challenges as they prepare to graduate from high school and head off in different directions.
With Troy and Chad both offered basketball scholarships to college and Gabriella invited to attend Stanford University, the students all join together with the Wildcats to stage a spectacular end of year musical and plan their prom.
High School Musical 3 features incredible new music and exciting dance numbers all designed to take maximum advantage of the big screen and deliver even more high energy entertainment
High School Musical 3: Senior Year
is the third film in Disney's record-smashing series, and the first to debut in theaters rather than on the Disney Channel, and while many of the elements are the same, the film is at times bigger to accommodate the big screen. All the usual characters are back, but not for long: it's senior year, and the classmates are all facing the prospect of leaving East High in separate directions. Troy (Zac Efron) is ready to play hoops at the University of Albuquerque with best friend Chad (Corbin Bleu), but doesn't want to be a thousand miles away from Stanford-bound Gabriella (Vanessa Hudgens). Taylor (Monique Coleman) is headed to Yale, while Sharpay (Ashley Tisdale), brother Ryan (Lucas Grabeel), and the school's pianist-composer Kelsi (Olesya Rulin) are all in the running for a single scholarship to Juilliard. The showcase for them will be Ms. Darbus' new musical, Senior Year, which will recap the academic careers of the students themselves. (So if the original HSM was a retelling of Grease, HSM3 is more A Chorus Line). There are a few new characters: Sharpay's personal assistant Tiara Gold (Jemma McKenzie-Brown), and Troy's hangers-on, Rocket Man (Matt Prokop) and Donny Dion (Justin Martin), who may give the franchise life beyond its original cast (if they make some headway in the likability department). But it's all about the songs and the dances. Ryan and Sharpay sizzle in a classic-musical tribute "I Want It All"; Troy and Gabriella share a rooftop waltz in "Can I Have This Dance"; and Troy and Chad blow off steam in a salvage yard in "The Boys Are Back". "Now or Never" is this film's "sports song", and Troy and Gabriella have their big duet "Just Wanna Be With You" and their own showcases, in "Scream" and "Walk Away", respectively. If the closing anthem, "High School Musical", seems on the self-congratulatory side, it's a rare misstep in a series that has made a generation of tweens (especially girls) sing and dance and realize they can be whatever they want to be. --David Horiuchi