Friday, November 6, 2009
At least 'Chicago' had a good story. 'Dreamgirls,' one of the few musicals of the decade, is like every musical success story that's told over and over again. Resembling the story of The Supremes, 'Dreamgirls' (based off the popular Broadway musical) tells the story of three talented female singers (played by Beyonce Knowles, Jennifer Hudson, and Anika Noni Rose) who rise to prominence after getting picked up by a hotshot record executive (Jamie Foxx). One scene they're scrambling to get into a little talent gig, and the next they're a motown sensation. Now here are my main problems with the movie: 1. It gets going too soon. Right away we see these three women performing. But we don't really know who they are. And in the end we still don't really know. 2. The film doesn't focus enough on the characters. It tries to disguise this with a sleek shimmering production coat, but it didn't quite work. 3. As I said, this is pretty formulaic material. I'd like to maybe see something new instead. 4. There was only one performance that I actually liked: Beyonce. She's actually fantastic in this. Jamie Foxx was surprisingly bland. Jennifer Hudson, who was supposed to really 'sell' the film, tried a bit too hard in my opinion. Plus, I couldn't stand her character. On the bright side, this is a good looking movie, even if all the shine replaced some of the story's depth. And there is one surprising performance I forgot to mention that was terrific: Eddie Murphy as an unstable musician who helps get the girls started. But overall I was extremely let down. 'Dreamgirls' was lackluster at best. However, it wasn't one of the those movies that I hoped to end desperately. Actually I wanted it to keep going in the hope that there would be some great scene that redeemed the film some. Unfortunately, there wasn't.