Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Why Dreamgirls?

Will asked, why am I putting Dreamgirls in the number one stop in my recent best pic predictions.

Maybe a better question, is Why Not Dreamgirls?

Dreamgirl's is a Broadway musical, and obviously recent movie musicals are hit-or-miss with audiences and critics but this seems like it's on track for a hit.

Also, people like stories of triumph...unfortunatly the more artistic film artists are often involved in projects that can't deal with the triumph of the human spirit, except the genre of musical seems to open up a unique opportunity. What might be viewed as trite can be glamerous and artful when overdone in this style.

Also, talented cast and crew, some with nice award pedigrees.

Plus, Our society is enamored with the dream of accesible stardome: Ray, Walk The Line, American Idol.

Dreamgirls is the same but different.

Director/screenwriter Bill Condon did a great job writing the adaption to Chicago...I think he could do again, this time in the director's chair.

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Emma said...

Well, I actually didn't think "Why not Dreamgirls" before, so you do make some good points.

But I just can't accept the idea of Beyonce acting. I just can't.

Darrell said...

Your reasons are sound... and although I don't enjoy musicals, you've convinced me that this is a fairly safe bet.

My gut reaction is to root for Flags of our Fathers, but it'll never get the nod. It's too much of a reminder of the times we live in now, and people don't want that.

I had no IDEA that Bill Clinton wrote the adaptation for Chicago. I'm surprised he didn't work in more gratuitous nudity.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the post, RC.

You know, I had completely forgotten that Bill wrote the screenplay for Chicago. Just that gives me confidence in a musical directed by him.
I guess my hesitance is:
1. It's another biopic musical. And I get the sense that for most people, that's pretty much a dead horse right now. Give it 5 years, perhaps. But right after Ray, Walk the Line and talks about several other musical biopics... OK, I'll admit, it takes a really great musical for me to like it. So I'm a tough sell anyway when it comes to musicals. But I did love Chicago.
2. Bill Condon's a good director, but in my opinion, he's not quite there yet. Maybe it just seems like his Candyman days are not far enough in the past yet.
3. And even when it comes to biopics, if I don't already know the person, then it's hard to get interested. I'm sure that's just my weakness.

Thanks for the post, though! I'll certainly look forward to seeing how the film goes.

RC said...

Darrell, you totally made me check to make sure I didn't miss type bill clinton instead of bill condon...you jerk :-)

emma, beyonce acting...it's probably not that far of a stretch since she's playing a singer.

and will...in regards to this being a biopic...well, it's not really a biopic...the Dreamgirls are factious, although it seems like it's clearly a pseudo-Supremes biopic.

Joanna Arcieri said...

I'll probably see it. Personally, I feel a little underwhelmed by this years Oscar possibilities. But it's barely October so I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

StinkyLulu said...

Yeah, the genius of Dreamgirls (in its stage version) is that it's a fictionalized biopic, which makes it great in a strange way. (Like Citizen Kane benefits from the association/referent with Hearst but goes thrillingly beyond it.)

I'm more stuck on Jennifer Hudson's casting than Beyonce's, but I do tend to agree with RC: if Dreamgirls ends up working, it'll be toughtoughtough to stop...

Unknown said...

Dreamgirls, I have not heard of this show yet, is that Beyonce in the middle? Maybe not.
I love these broadway musicals. Thanks for sharing. :)

Terence Towles Canote said...

Well, I think right now things are hit and miss with regards to musicals. Chicago won best picture and did well at the box office, but Rent bombed. Of course, I think what it might come down to is two things: 1.) does the movie have a broad appeal and 2.) is its music actually good. In the case of Chicago, it both had a broad appeal and good music. That's why it succeeded. On the other hand, in my humble opinion Rent probably only appeals to young people living in urban areas and, worse yet, it really doesn't have very good music (a lot of it sounds to me like Muzak).

Taking this into account, I think Dreamgirls has a real chance at box office success and possibly even getting a best picture nomination. As a fictional biopic, it will probably appeal to a large number of people (who doesn't love those old girl groups?) and the music is actually good. I can't say it will be a huge success (we're not talking Lord of the Rings here), but it will do well.

Darrell said...

RC: Darrell, you totally made me check to make sure I didn't miss type bill clinton instead of bill condon...you jerk :-)

Just keeping you on your toes, man. ;)

So what's the next musical that Hollywood will mine, by the way? Now that Hollywood and Broadway have gotten into bed with each other, making musicals out of movies and movies out of musicals, what's left for them to do? They're gonna run out of material to share before long. Am I the only person who thinks that Mel Brooks making a movie out of a musical based on an old movie is recycling in a desperate, depressing way that darkens the future? How long until The Producers: The Musical Based On The Movie Based On The Musical From The Origial Movie ??

Broadway, Hollywood and TV are milking each other to death. We need about fifteen more Charlie Kaufmans.

Anonymous said...

But Darrell, don't you think your complex musical-movie-musical-movie adaptation is exactly something Kaufman would love? :-)

(jk, of course; I second your emotion). When is that fella going to come out with his next film, anyway? He & Donald must have a serious case of writer's block.