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Dreamgirls VIdeoMusical send-up of the Motown story.

My taste for contemporary movie musicals was completely spoiled by Moulin Rouge. Chicago did nothing for me and Dreamgirls only got close.

But it did get close.

Considering Dreamgirls on its own merits, I have to admit that it was a really well done musical. With original songs and dancing that mimicked early R&B (though with a 21st century sensibility) the story follows the rise of The Dreams (inspired by The Supremes) and a James Brown analog aptly portrayed by Eddie Murphy, both of whom have to deal with the star-making machine that was Motown and its founder Barry Gordy.

Most impressive was the second act that was wall to wall singing. Musicals are a universe in which plots move forward in song and while we are conditioned to accept this breach of reality, I was very impressed by how the energy and pacing of the songs carried the story line on a meteoric rise to stardom.

Other aspects of the stagecraft that bare notice were the costumes and hair styles. Very impressive to say the least.

The one Dream who got left behind in favor of a more telegenic singer always impressed me as a very true singer. Her facial expressions and singing style reminded me a lot of Aretha Franklin, but she really didn't sing and act at the same time very well which is kind of strange because during the spoken portions of the movie, I never noticed that this character was acting. So, she can act I guess, and she can sing very well, but she wasn't able to sing and act at the same time. Strange if you think about it.

Anyway, a well crafted movie overall, but the music didn't really stick with me. Perhaps I need to listen to it longer...


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on June 18, 2007 8:07 PM.

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