Urban haps of a grrrl on a mission to be a better writer, a new music master-blaster and a wonderfully brilliant razor-packing, MAC LipGlass wearing feminista...

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Dream Girls

I've heard all the hype. Read the rumors about jealous girls and bitter women. And finally, last Thursday, I saw THE movie of '06-- Dream Girls.

It was everything I knew it would be flashy, fabulous and yes, fantastic! Having seen the play and been touched literally and figuratively by both former Effies-- the original Jennifer Holiday and the oft forgotten Lilias White, I have to admit I am a bonafide Dream Girl's Grrrl. I still have my original Playbill and I still get all misty-eyed when I think back to I guess it was '88 or '89 when I waited by the back stage exit for Ms. White. I needed to testify and tell her just how much Dream Girls had changed my life and that I knew now I had no choice but to follow my dreams to be an actress-singing sister too. Well Ms. White came out, I confessed and laid it all out on the line (tears and all) and she signed my Playbill and took me out to dinner and believe me I have never been the same since that night! Anyway back to the flick.

I know Jennifer Holliday wanted to be recast as Effie, which is totally bananas. Ummm, hello she is like 20 years too old for the part! It's so sad to see that this sister cannot let go of this role. For what it's worth in a way I can see why she is so bound to Effie Melody White. As much as she made and embodied that role, that character ended up making her and defining not only her career but her life. I mean who knows that Nell Carter was the original Effie before leaving to go to Hollywood for Gime A Break? And believe me no one even mentions so much as a peep about Lilias. I hear Holliday even fell madly in love with the director Michael Bennett and of course that love never blossomed because he was gay and so, in so many ways her life became Effie’s-- no love, no major recording success, etc.

On the other hand, I don't foresee Jennifer Hudson having those same issues. No doubt she sparkles and simmers on screen and when she sings it’s crazy how her voice just leaps off the screen and leaves the audience shook. You woulda thought she was on stage the way folks were hollering and clapping. It was mad emotional up in Lincoln Plaza Cinemas and I was in a theater full of journalists no less. But Ms. Hudson gots that thang that transports you right to the belly of her pain, her determination, her ish. She ain’t no Jennifer Holiday and frankly I'm glad. This gives Hudson the room to create her own path wherein Effie remains a character and doesn't eat her whole. Beyonce looks good and sounds good too. She did was she was supposed to do as Deena—look glamorous and sound sweet. Anika Noni Rose however is stunning! Definitely the best actor of the bunch she gives so much in her facial expressions-- in her eyes. Because of the never-ending Beyonce/ Jennifer drama everyone is missing this Tony-award winning actress who gives a performance that is touching, fiery and delicate all at once.

Definitely see this movie and let me know what you think. On my way out that night I bumped into Oprah's galpal Gayle and she said that this was her third time seeing it and she thought the crowd was a bit subdued in comparison to the other screenings she had attended. Anyway I'm just glad that a positive movie with a Black cast is going to make so much money and has folk excited the way I was almost 18 years ago. You know Magic Johnson Theaters across the nation are going to be off the chain on Christmas. I gotta see it again and this time at the MJT in Harlem just to see the popcorn and chicken tenders fly-up in the air when folks hear And I Am Telling You!

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Blogger Haute Girl said...

i cannot wait to see that movie!

1/10/2007 11:50 PM


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