Instead of the traditional two-act format, the story is told in four parts called "seasons." Spring goes back to the group's roots as a bunch of neighborhood guys from northern New Jersey singing under a streetlamp and struggling to find an identity. Summer is when the Four Seasons exploded onto the American charts with hits like "Big Girls Don't Cry." Fall details their struggles with personal issues coupled with the pressures of fame. Winter wraps up the show with a "where-are-they-now" segment and the Four Seasons' reunion performance at their Rock 'N Roll Hall of Fame induction. Each "season" is told from the perspective of a different group member, respectively: Tommy DeVito, Bob Gaudio, Nick Massi, and Frankie Valli himself.
One particular part of the production values reminded me of my high school and community theater days. (I promise I mean that in the most loving way possible). Minor characters such as Frankie's first wife Mary, mobster Gyp DeCarlo, club patrons, police officers, etc. are played by the same group of 6-8 actors and actresses. They'd go offstage for a while and reappear in a different wig/dress combo or uniform. It didn't detract from the experience because they're all such talented singers/dancers.
The main four actors each brought something unique to the table:
- Corey Greenan brought the perfect amount of roguish charm to his role as Tommy DeVito, founding member of the group. Tommy is a classic archetype all about wine, women, and song. The friend that you know always ends up in trouble but is too much fun to quit hanging out with.
- Tommaso Antico as the youngest and most naive member of the group, songwriter Bob Gaudio, is so adorable I wanted to put him in my pocket and take him home.
- One of my absolute favorite moments from the movie is when quiet Nick Massi finally has enough and goes on a rant about all the reasons it sucks to room with Tommy on tour. ("The man was not properly socialized!"). Chris Stevens executed that monologue to perfection.
- Last and certainly not least, Jonny Wexler brought down the freakin' house as Frankie Valli. His singing voice is phenomenal; recreating such a distinctive sound cannot be easy. He's an equally gifted actor. I found myself shedding a few tears during the "Fallen Angel" scene.