Latest Issue


I went to see Mamma Mia! in Stockholm expecting clichés and thin characters—and found them. What I wasn't expecting was a dazzling piece of cinema

By Mark Cousins   September 2008

I saw the Abba musical Mamma Mia! recently. I was in Stockholm, the capital city of Abba-ness, and the film—which I was desperate to see—was playing in the Skandia; one of the world’s loveliest cinemas, designed by the great architect Gunnar Asplund.

As I sat down in Asplund’s barrel-like auditorium, I thought to myself: this film cannot work. A movie needs to create a coherent world. How can this one do so? Anglophone, melodious, Swedish pop tunes from the 1970s and 1980s were shoehorned into a west end mega-musical set in Greece—all done with an eye trained on the tourist…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect