Dreamgirls

Dreamgirls

4.7 13
Director: Bill Condon

Cast: Bill Condon, Jamie Foxx, Beyoncé Knowles, Eddie Murphy

     
 

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Director Bill Condon brings Tom Eyen's Tony award-winning Broadway musical to the big screen in a tale of dreams, stardom, and the high cost of success in the cutthroat recording industry. The time is the 1960s, and singers Effie (Jennifer Hudson), Lorrell (Anika Noni Rose),See more details below

Overview

Director Bill Condon brings Tom Eyen's Tony award-winning Broadway musical to the big screen in a tale of dreams, stardom, and the high cost of success in the cutthroat recording industry. The time is the 1960s, and singers Effie (Jennifer Hudson), Lorrell (Anika Noni Rose), and Deena (Beyoncé Knowles) are about to find out just what it's like to have their wildest dreams come true. Discovered at a local talent show by ambitious manager Curtis Taylor Jr. (Jamie Foxx), the trio known as "the Dreamettes" is soon offered the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of opening for popular singer James "Thunder" Early (Eddie Murphy). Subsequently molded into an unstoppable hit machine by Taylor and propelled into the spotlight as "the Dreams," the girls quickly find their bid for the big time taking priority over personal friendship as Taylor edges out the ultra-talented Effie so that the more beautiful Deena can become the face of the group. Now, as the crossover act continues to dominate the airwaves, the small-town girls with big-city dreams slowly begin to realize that the true cost of fame may be higher than any of them ever anticipated.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Perry Seibert
Bill Condon's Dreamgirls is a good entertainment. The flashy costumes and art direction humorously and quickly establish the various time periods, and the thinly veiled references to Motown history help make the film an enjoyable exercise. However, there is something off throughout the movie that keeps it from greatness. Some of the musical numbers occur while the performers are on-stage or in the recording booth, and these songs help express the characters' thoughts and feelings, but other times the characters break into song in everyday life, and these moments -- so natural in the best movie musicals -- feel forced in Dreamgirls. The problem first becomes apparent in the famous "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" sequence where Effie (Jennifer Hudson) pours her heart out both to her bandmates and to the man she loves after being kicked out of the band. The song requires a near-operatic expression of emotion and the movie grinds to a halt, visually as well as dramatically. It is quite literally a showstopper, but while Hudson gives a strong vocal performance, the sequence goes on for so long that the audience becomes aware she is lip-synching. The song is so personal, such an individual expression of anger, grief, and inner turmoil, that even though it plays so powerfully on the stage, it loses something vital in the translation to film, and this disconnect will take some viewers out of the moment. Hudson's hard work impresses, but that may be indicative of just what is off about the entire movie: the filmmakers never let you forget how hard everyone is working. This is underscored during the closing credits, where each craft is spotlighted just as it is during the annual Oscar telecast. The costume director's name appears alongside images of wardrobe sketches and the final costumes made from them. All this work is appreciated, and one is thankful that they cared so much, but the best musicals make all of that hard work seem effortless. The most memorable and evocative moments in movie musicals happen when song and dance are simply the only avenues by which the characters can express the scope of their emotions. There is a lightness to great musicals, and Dreamgirls is certainly not light. Dreamgirls is good, but it would impress more if it weren't so eager to impress.

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Product Details

Release Date:
05/01/2007
UPC:
0097361235523
Original Release:
2006
Rating:
PG13
Source:
Dreamworks Video
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Time:
2:10:00
Sales rank:
92,122

Special Features

DVD Exclusive Jennifer Hudson Performance; 12 Extended and Alternate Scenes; Music Video "Listen" by Beyoncé Knowles; "Building The Dream" Feature-length documentary; Image Gallery with over 1,100 images; Dream Logic: Film Editing; Dressing The Dreams: Costume Design; Center Stage: Theatrical Lighting; Dreamgirls – Beyoncé Knowles screen test; Ain’t No Party – Anika Noni Rose audition; Steppin’ To The Bad Side – Fatima Robinson choreography audition; Previsualization Sequences

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Jamie Foxx Curtis Taylor Jr.
Beyoncé Knowles Deena Jones
Eddie Murphy James "Thunder" Early
Jennifer Hudson Effie White
Danny Glover Marty Madison
Anika Noni Rose Lorrell Robinson
Keith Robinson C.C. White
Sharon Leal Michelle Morris
Hinton Battle Wayne
John Lithgow Jerry Harris
John Krasinski Sam Walsh
Loretta Devine Actor
Jocko Sims Elvis Kelly
Laura Bell Bundy Actor

Technical Credits
Bill Condon Director,Screenwriter
Bob Beemer Sound Mixer
Willie D. Burton Sound/Sound Designer
Scott Cutler Songwriter
Sharen Davis Costumes/Costume Designer
Siedah Garrett Songwriter
Virginia Katz Editor
Beyoncé Knowles Songwriter
Henry Krieger Score Composer,Songwriter
Laurence Mark Producer
Harvey Mason Musical Arrangement
Matt Sullivan Musical Direction/Supervision
Michael Minkler Sound Mixer
John Myhre Production Designer
Anne Preven Songwriter
Willie Reale Songwriter
Fatima Robinson Choreography
Tobias Schliessler Cinematographer
Randy Spendlove Musical Direction/Supervision
Damon Thomas Musical Arrangement
Tomas Voth Art Director
Patricia Witcher Executive Producer
Richard E. Yawn Sound/Sound Designer
Debra Zane Casting

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