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Chicago

Chicago

 

Title - Chicago
My Admission - $8.00
One Line Review - It's All That Jazz.

 

Review - Chicago is great.  Probably the most entertaining film I remember >from last year.  Catherine Zeta-Jones-Douglas and Renee Zellweger play a pair of murderesses (esesssess) in the early 1930s vying for top billing in the Chicago tabloids.  Richard Gere is their seedy lawyer.  John C. Reily is Zellweger's invisible husband and Queen Latifah is 'Mama', we'll just call her the warden.

Chicago follows the trials and tribulations of our, well we can't call them heroines but you get the point, as they attempt to 'one up' each other in popularity and stardom. This is done to a most effective point.

The singing and dancing are more entertaining than you'd believe and the acting, when it's happening, is really quite good.  Chicago retains most of its stage appeal and appearance.  Quite a masterful stroke for the filmmakers and an interesting feel for the moviegoer. But perhaps the real star of Chicago is the Editor.  Bringing the stage to the screen in an Oscar worthy way.

He's what makes this film so easy to enjoy.

Point of fact, Chicago really can't hold a candle to the classic musicals of old Hollywood.  It just doesn't cut that kind of mustard.  There's no Gene Kelly, no Fred Astair, no Ginger Rogers or Danny Kaye, etc, etc.  No, no. No.  This is still Queen Latifah and Richard Gere.  No 'Make Em Laugh' kind of high jinks or 'When Your A Jet' kinda choreography.  But Chicago still manages to be as enjoyable as some of Hollywood's past classics.

Speaking of acting.  Renee Zellweger is the surprise hit of the film.  She proves she can sing, she can dance, and she can really carry a film. Catherine Zeta-Jones is less interesting but performs surprisingly well. Richard Gere on the other hand is still an actor and a damn good one.  His acting scenes are as good as anything he's ever done; while his singing leaves something to be desired.  However his 'tap dancing' act is top-notch. Queen Latifah is fine as Mama Morton but nothing even close to Oscar worthy and that goes for John C. Reily too.  I enjoy both of these actors but the Oscar Nominations for these roles, are bullshit.  There's not enough meat to these parts to warrant this kind of praise.  Sorry, but it's true.

All in all a surprisingly fun time.  Chicago is much more entertaining and less pretentious than Moulin Rouge and defiantly not as odd.  Oscar will just love that fact.

-m-



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Turn Down The Lights, Turn Up The Sound.

Matthew Gilbert © 1999-2015 All Rights Reserved

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