Friday, 6 January 2012


Chicago, 2002
Directed by Rob Marshall
Nominated for 13 Oscars, Won 6

Synopsis: It's 1920's Chicago. And Velma Kelly (a famous star, tease, cabaret singer and sister act), and Roxie Hart (a wanna-be star, wanting to be the next Velma) are both throw into death row for committing murder. Velma, for killing her sister and husband who she found going behind her back together, and Roxie, for killing the man she was cheating with who lied about making her a star. The two are competing for fame and publicity, and also sympathy, that will keep them from being hanged for their crimes, through the use of lawyer to many a female murderer, Billy Flynn. But the road to innocence is littered with lies, betrayal and deceit.

Once again, I didn't know much about this film. I went into it thinking it was the rise of Catherine Zeta-Jones and Renee Zellweger to fame, through Richard Gere. While I was wrong, I certainly wasn't too far off the mark. I was shocked when I saw Roxie Hart (Zellweger) shoot her lover. I was confused to where it was going, but was completely interested.

The film uses, in my opinion, I unique use of it's music. All the musical numbers are set on a stage, cabaret-lounge style, and is intermingled with reality. The numbers are almost the inner feelings and voices of the characters, and take place in their heads, showing us what is almost literally going on. The story itself wasn't a musical. There was no singing in the actual jail, or in the courts, etc, but all was taken place as a metaphorical telling of the current circumstances, sweeping back and forth between the two, which I found quite clever!

Additionally, I was very impressed with Renee Zellweger and Catherine Zeta-Jones. Both are very talented women, and blew me away. I was a little nervous when I saw Renee on the cover because I've seen her in very few movies, and the ones I've seen she's a very serene, sensible character. It was interesting to see her in something so completely different and to completely own it. She was so believable in her innocent yet not-so innocent role. She's also a very talented dancer and singer, and having read she had no formal training in either before the film, I'm quite impressed. Similar to Ms. Zeta-Jones, she is a very talented singer and dancer.

While seeing women dance around sexy in underwear, essentially, is not really my thing, I still think it was done quite well. It was a true satire of putting on a show for the media, and no matter what the truth is, as long as it's entertaining the media will swallow it whole and ask few questions. One particular number that really enticed me was the Ventriloquism number. It was cleverly done, and was very telling, but also very satirical in the way that Billy Flynn and other "entertainers", per se, control the media.

I really liked this film, and I give it a lot of credit since none of the three leads are professional singers or dances. The costumes were great, and the music and dancing was simply fantastic. I have very little negative to say about this film. It was really well done!

Acting- 8/10 
Directing- 8/10 
Screenplay- 7/10 
Visuals- 9/10 
Music- 9/10 
Rewatchability- 7/10 
Emotional Connection 7/10 
Entertainment- 7.5/10 
Overall Enjoyment- 8/10 
Overall Package- 7/10       

Total: 77.5/100

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