Should Bad Singers be Dubbed?

Hello, I’m the Nostalgia Critic. I remember it so you don’t have to. Did you all see the remake of Beauty and the Beast? That Emma Watson got some pipes on her, huh? She’s just like a well-oiled car, in that
there’s certainly been a lot of auto-tuning. [booing] Good, good. I can feel your anger.
The hate is swelling in you now! Regardless of your thoughts on this movie (it blows), most people can agree that
Emma Watson is no Paige O’Hara (O’Hara as Belle)
I want adventure in the great wide somewhere! (Watson as Belle)
I want adventure in the great wide somewhere! But if she can’t sing it better or in an entertainingly unique way, why sing it at all? This is not the first time in the past
several years we’ve asked this question Big-name actors like the Rock,
Emma Stone, Pierce Brosnan– “And I’m Javert!” And of course, our darling little song Crowe. All have singing voices, most people would agree, are not that musically impressive. At least certainly not strong enough to
survive in musical theater. For years, though, this wasn’t really seen as a
problem as when an actor couldn’t sing They just dub them! Yeah, nobody even cared. If you could sing, great! But if not, you were still loved! You just got
someone else to sing your part for you But recently there’s been this big thing about not dubbing singers, even if they’re not musically inclined! Because of that our eardrums
have paid with Gerard Butler– “All that the Phantom!” Marlon Brando- (Brando in Guys and Dolls)
“But there is room for doubt.” Even Eastwood gave it a try,
much to our everlasting horror (Eastwood in Paint Your Wagon)
“But suddenly my words reach someone else’s ear.” So the big question is: if an actor is not a good singer, should they be dubbed? Well, let’s look at the pros and cons! The big argument is that if an actor is dubbed,
it takes away from their performance! It’s not the actor’s inflections, tone, or even voice. So many would say we’re not
actually watching the actor. I’ll admit there are times where an
obvious dub can get in the way. Johnathan Taylor Thomas’s voice change in
Lion King is pretty distracting. Simba (speaking)
Well when I’m king, that’ll be the first thing to go. Simba (singing)
I’m gonna be the main/mane event!
Like no king was before! But then again, Matthew Broderick’s
dubbing is almost identical. (Joseph Williams as Simba)
So many things to tell her, but how to make her see? VO: Cary Elwes’s dubbing is laughably
noticeable in Quest for Camelot. Gared (speaking)
Really? I’ll have to take your word for that. Gared (singing)
Everything breathes, and I know each breath! But George Clooney’s in O Brother, Where art Thou?
has made the song a helpful favorite! (Clooney singing “Man of Constant Sorrow) I don’t think that song would be as big a hit
if George used his original vocals on that one… Nevertheless, I get the argument. When a dub is really obvious, it CAN take you
out of the moment. But if an actor isn’t a singer, why have them sing? Isn’t that the whole reason we watch people to begin with, to see them do things we can’t? Gregory Peck is impressive because he’s a better actor than most of the people in the audience Audra McDonald is impressive because
her singing range is incredible compared to anyone else most likely listening to her! Both create an emotional reaction with their gift. Of course there are some that can do both:
Idina Menzel, Julie Andrews, Hugh Jackman… The list goes on, but not for an incredibly long time. Most can either act well and sing bad
or act bad and sing well. While star power is not quite as huge as it used to be
in the past, it still counts for a lot in movies. And having a big name can, and usually does,
bring a lot more people in So the idea of putting in a big draw in a genre that’s now becoming popular again is no big shock, but forcing them to be out of their element
in a field where people spend YEARS tuning their gifts seems pretty unfair. Now don’t get me wrong, Hollywood is the Land of Unfair, but if someone can make you cry with THIS: (Michael Crawford as The Phantom)
This is the point of no return! And it’s being replaced with THIS: (Gerard Butler as The Phantom)
This is the point of no return! People are going to notice. But there is something interesting that’s
happening with bad singers and film, that sometimes could work in
their favor: having charm! Compare, for example,
two bad singers in two different films. First we have Russel Crowe from Les Mis. (Russel Crowe as Javert)
Lord, let me find him, that I may see him
safe behind bars… Next we have The Rock from Moana (The Rock as Maui)
There’s no need to pray! It’s okay! You’re Welcome!
HA! I guess it’s just my way of being me! Even though both of these voices are not especially great, the Rock sounded a lot better, didn’t he? Look at how unfocused, uncomfortable,
and uninterested Crowe seems, He looks like he’s more concerned about how to carry a tune rather than being a passionate character. The Rock, on the other hand, listen to his inflections, look at how he’s animated! Observe how 100% in the moment he is! (The Rock as Maui)
What can I say except you’re welcome
For the tides, the sun, the sky! Despite both these two not being good singers,
the Rock is having so much more fun and doing a much better job at sucking you in
that it doesn’t even really matter! Now let’s switch it around. Let’s have another Disney song
with another Les Mis song! Anne Hathaway, by no means, has given the
best rendition of I Dreamed a Dream! There are literally dozens of other recordings of singers with powerhouse voices who can do it a lot better, But her performance is engaging, gets you invested, makes you feel every ounce of pain
this person has gone through. (Hathaway as Fantine)
But there are dreams that cannot be,
And there are storms we cannot weather. Compare this to the Beauty and the Beast remake, where poor Emma Watson sounds like she’s reading notes in a recording studio rather than discovering her
captor might have a redeemable humanity, (Emma as Belle)
There’s something sweet and almost kind,
But he was mean, and he was coarse and unrefined It’s so cold, lifeless, and robotic that of COURSE
we’re going to notice the flaws even more, as well as the technical corrections made afterwards. Now I know a lot of you really like this movie,
so I will say this role can’t be easy! [Emma Watson] portraying Kristen Stewart
portraying Belle HAS to be difficult. [ Booing ] Good, good! Strike me down with all of your hatred
and your journey toward the Dark Side will be complete! There’s plenty of other actors who
have won people over in a similar wa,y despite them not having the most phenomenal voice. Johnny Depp’s madness in Sweeney Todd distracted enough people to get an Oscar nod, Emma Stone actually WON an Oscar despite her singing being flawed yet beautifully vulnerable, and Disney once again helped
Robin Williams’s dazzling energy leap off the screen in this larger-than-life roller coaster! (Robin as the Genie)
Friend! (Robin as the Genie)
Friend! Like! (Robin as the Genie)
Friend! Like! Meeeee! It’s not great singing, but it’s a great voice
and sometimes, that’s enough! And bizarrely enough, it can work both ways! In My Fair Lady, Audrey Hepburn is dubbed
while Rex Harrison isn’t, despite Hepburn obviously having a better voice than him! (Hepburn as Eliza)
Lots of chocolates for me to eat!
Lots of coal makin’ lots of ‘eat! (Rex as Henry Higgins)
–or worse, hear a Cornishman converse.
I’d rather hear a choir singing flat. But again, this isn’t what was needed for the movie. HER musical sequences needed to be huge and grand, while HIS musical sequences need to be snarky and witty His form of talk-singing, as some people call it,
works perfect for what’s needed while Hepburn’s good, but not great, voice would have weakened what was needed in her scenes. (Marni Nixon dubbing Hepburn)
I get words all day through, first from him, now from you.
Is that all you blighters can do?! (Hepburn’s actual voice)
I get words all day through, first from him, now from you.
Is that all you blighters can do?! Her voice is totally passable, but it’s not huge and this sequence needed a huge voice So yes, there are times where a good singer
needs to be replaced with a great one while a bad singer can just be kept and,
surprisingly, they can both work Sometimes though it makes it worse. In The Phantom of the Opera, Minnie Driver is dubbed
despite the fact that she can sing Just not great like an opera singer,
which was required for the role Yet everyone else is allowed to use their real voices
despite them obviously struggling like hell! Now only do we have non-singers singing, But we have an ACTUAL professional singer
to compare them to! That just makes things a million times more awful! So with all this going back and forth,
what’s it all amount to? Well, maybe some actors should be dubbed while other actors should be allowed to sing. Depending on what’s needed for the movie. If a non-singer can pull off the emotion of the scene stronger than a professional singer, it makes sense to use them. If the emotion of the scene completely
rests on how well the song is sung, it should probably go to the dubbing department. The Rock and Hathaway have emotional ups and downs that their vocal flaws can make more effective. it also gives more leeway to hide their weaknesses. Watson and Crowe’s short breaths and audio correcting can’t be hidden as well in what’s supposed to be a grand sweeping epic, so it would
make sense then to dub them over! Especially when we have
something to compare it to already! It just makes it that much harder to make it their own! (Philip Quast as Javert)
This I swear by the STARS! (Crowe as Javert)
This I swear by the STARS! And to those saying that dubbing
takes away from an actor’s performance, I’d say it’s like any other special effect! Some are done great, some are done poorly, but you still work with it to create an illusion that results in a strong emotion. It doesn’t matter what means you use
to get there, or who did the most work as long as the audience is engaged by what’s going on. An actor doesn’t insist they do their own special effects makeup, they leave that to the professionals! Yet they still have to act with it to suck the audience in. That’s exactly how dubbing is supposed to work if it’s done right. There’s also no shame if someone’s not a good singer. A playwright doesn’t have to be an
actor to get an emotional response, a special effects artist doesn’t have to be a writer to suck somebody into a new world! So why would anyone expect an actor also has to be a singer to win an audience over? It’s all an illusion anyway and the better it dazzles, the more we forget we’re just sitting in a seat watching a screen. We instead feel like we’re being absorbed into a different environment So rather than letting poor actors like Pierce Brosnan– (Brosnan in Mamma Mia!)
Where are those happy days?
They seem so hard to find. Or Lee Marvin– (Marvin in Paint Your Wagon)
Wheels are made for rollin’, mules are made to pack. embarrass themselves again. Just remember, film is a collaborative art form! Asong as the focus is taking people on an amazing journey, people are always ready to hear that music,
no matter how it’s done or who sings it. I’m the Nostalgia Critic.
I remember it so you don’t have to! Hey, Doug Walker here doing the charity shout-out and this week, we are doing the Waterkeeper Alliance This is the world’s fastest-growing
environmental movement. With more than 200 local Waterkeepers patrolling rivers, lakes, and coastal waterways on six continents, Waterkeepers defends their communities against anyone who’s tainted their right to clean water. They speak with a single powerful voice as they tackle the world’s most pressing water issues. The Alliance stands behind every Waterkeeper, increasing their ability to function as community defenders in their efforts
to protect the world’s waterways. They support them by providing expertise in science, law, strategic planning, and communication, Making them more effective in their community of courtrooms and classroom. If you look at this site & their YouTube page, you can experience all the various ways that they help people get the clean water that they deserve. This is a great organization that deserves to get
as much support as it can. So click on the link and see how you, too, can help millions of people drink safe

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