The fact that musicals don’t always follow the usual laws of logic and that everything is just a bit over the top anyway is commented on tongue-in-cheek early on in the star-studded “The Prom. Those who have problems with such things will probably have little fun with the Netflix film from “American Horror Story” creator Ryan Murphy. Most musical fans, on the other hand, will have a very different experience …

… because the adaptation of the Broadway play of the same name, loosely inspired by a true story, literally celebrates the art form “musical”: Equipped with a top-class cast around superstar Meryl Streep and newcomer Jo Ellen Pellman, “The Prom” advances in its best moments to an infectious good-mood hit that seems to embrace the whole world. You’ll forgive the fact that in between there are a few long stretches and one or two mediocre vocal interludes.

Emma (Jo Ellen Pellmann) would like to go to the prom with her friend …

Broadway superstars Dee Dee Allen (Meryl Streep) and Barry Glickman (James Corden) are devastated. Their latest work got such disastrous reviews that it was canceled on opening night – which is also related to their bad public image as narcissists. It quickly becomes clear: A high-profile publicity stunt is needed – but please, not one that requires too much effort. A trending topic on Twitter comes at just the right time: In rural Indiana, the entire prom at a school was canceled by the conservative PTA because the lesbian Emma (Jo Ellen Pellmann) wanted to go with her girlfriend as her date.

With Broadway singer Angie (Nicole Kidman) waiting in vain for her big break and unemployed ex-sitcom star Trent (Andrew Rannells), Dee Dee and Barry travel to Indiana to save the party. Too bad Emma can actually stand up for herself pretty well with the struggling Principal Hawkins (Keegan-Michael Key) by her side. So for now, the stars only make things worse. And no one yet suspects that Emma’s friend is, of all things, model student Alyssa (Ariana DeBose). Her mother: Mrs. Greene (Kerry Washington), the arch-conservative leader of the parents’ movement…

At least visually a blast right away

“The Prom” needs a little moment before the action really picks up. Ryan Murphy had the original Broadway accurately and impressively recreated so that his stars could perform on the streets between the famous dance theaters – but despite the effort, the magic of this mecca of all musical fans doesn’t really transfer at first. The sets seem a bit sterile – and the fact that Nicole Kidman (“Paddington”) tries rather hard to keep up with her co-stars, but seems a bit stalky already because of her height, doesn’t make it any better…

As soon as the egoistic stars arrive in rural Indiana, however, there is a lot of momentum in “The Prom”. The gags about the clash between glamour and the provinces, which are certainly not new, but nevertheless lively, also contribute to this. It’s really amusing, for example, when Trent, who is always smiled at by Dee and Barry, is the only one recognized by the hotelier – in Indiana, even bad sitcoms are more familiar than some off-the-wall New York musicals. At the same time, newcomer Jo Ellen Pellman immediately becomes the emotional center of the film. Not only are her song interludes all very strong – they also go straight to the heart, as one would hope from such a musical production.

… but first a few Broadway stars have to travel to Indiana …

With the arrival of Emma, a true roller coaster ride begins, culminating in an early climax: When the student goes shopping with Barry for a prom dress, the initial two-person number “Tonight Belongs To You” increasingly turns into a big mass dance scene, with more and more students joining in to get ready as well, before the prom itself finally begins. In this sequence, “The Prom” initially turns out to be a single orgiastic celebration …

… only to culminate in a really hard knockdown, with which both the central song line “Life’s no dress rehearsal” and the song title once again take on a whole new meaning. On Broadway, this number, as emotionally turbulent as it was rousing, closed the first act and released the audience into the obligatory intermission – and on Netflix, too, some might press the pause button in order to process the moment appropriately first.