Saw Dreamgirls yesterday, hoping to be wowed, awed, and overpowered by the movie-musical. I was overpowered by Jennifer Hudson-- not just her potent pipes, but her charismatic face and serious acting skills put the other Dreams to shame. Beyonce, love her as much as I do, couldn't compete. The movie was mixed; it had moments of sublimity, it lookedgorgeous, and was full of powerful sounds and songs. Eddie Murphy was simultaneously hilarious and tragic, a definite highlight. But too many of the more maudlin songs from the musical were kept on at the expense of a quick-flowing plot. While songs that advance the plot are understandable on stage when the actors are far away and you can't see their facial expressions, in a movie like this they just seemed ridiculous. Furthermore, I was hoping for some more huge song and dance numbers to give Twyla Tharp a run for her money.
But quibbles aside, it was a lovely filmgoing experience, and worth the hype. Some of the songs are definitely still stomping and howling and emoting their way across my brain.
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