Dreamgirls (2006)

PG-13   |    |  Drama, Music, Musical


Dreamgirls (2006) Poster

A trio of black female soul singers cross over to the pop charts in the early 1960s, facing their own personal struggles along the way.


6.5/10
65,001

Videos


Photos

  • Danny Glover and Eddie Murphy in Dreamgirls (2006)
  • Jennifer Hudson in Dreamgirls (2006)
  • Christopher Meloni at an event for Dreamgirls (2006)
  • Jamie Foxx and Keith Robinson in Dreamgirls (2006)
  • Jennifer Hudson at an event for Dreamgirls (2006)
  • Keith Robinson and Jennifer Hudson in Dreamgirls (2006)

See all photos

Get More From IMDb

For an enhanced browsing experience, get the IMDb app on your smartphone or tablet.

Get the IMDb app

Reviews & Commentary

Add a Review


User Reviews


31 December 2006 | tedg
Michael Jackson Spits
You have only two first choices in making a movie musical; you can preserve its stage nature, or decide at the first to make a movie, something that has a cinematic sense. I like musical presentation and all; I like theater and the contact of performance. Its all fine, but what really transports me is what I think of as opera in the modern sense. Its that multiple delivery of sense, primarily through sweeping enveloping visual grammar, supplemented by coordinated threads: text, narrative, music, emotional and intellectual.

"Moulin Rouge" is my gold standard, born as a child of film, deeply reflexive. Chicago was less coherent — some of its cinematic collage really was just chop, but even then they eye needs rhythm and "Chicago" delivered. That film also had something this has only in certain places: sweat if not blood. We knew that Zellweger and Zeta-Jones are uninteresting people, and the songs manufactured emotionally (as opposed to say, blues songs from someone blue). But we saw them work their guts out.

This is an odd, odd thing musically. Start with genuine R&B, sung in Detroit basements and school auditoriums. Now transform that for the market, initially black showgoers. Now transform it again for a similar record-buying public. Again for white recordbuyers (where, incidentally I found myself in the late sixties), and then again for TeeVee watchers (and with added glamor, Las Vegas).

Let that steep for fifteen years, all becoming a joke, then transform it again for the Broadway stage. By this time, any performance related to this collection of genres cannot be genuine in any way, merely a commentary. The performers may be black, but its as far removed from what it pretends to be as a scene in this film depicts: a white teen along the lines of Johnny Vee covering a black song. Its not a matter of how good the singer is, even the earnest Hudson who gets the applause here. Its a matter of market forces: art is brought to us by market forces and those forces bend, filter, bleach.

Now take that stage show, based on a story about just this: how mass music MUST be untrue — take that stage musical and transform it one more time, and you'll have this. That's six generations from where this music meant something to what it is before it hits our ears. The only thing that can justify this is the full bore experience.

The stage show delivered it in spades, because it used extraordinary stagecraft. It was to the stage musical what "Moulin Rouge" was to the film musical: the vocabulary stretched to its most colorful (read: moving) excess. Where's that excess here? There are three (three?) moments where a rehearsal sweeps around and you find yourself on stage. Once done well would have been enough, these aren't.

One character in this needs to be the white space, the root of the thing in terms of values. Maybe it could have been the avuncular manager (Glover) or the silent Dad, or the child. But no one is given the nail. One song at least needs to be performed as genuine. Yes, Hudson's number brings down the house. But it is so overproduced and overstaged its clear it is merely — dare I say it? — a show by a woman trying hard to have a career, not a woman who actually lives in her song.

At least "Hustle and Flow" was obviously dishonest.

Oh well. Seeing Eddie Murphy do James Brown just before the man is buried meant something to me. Its an homage of sorts.

Ted's Evaluation -- 2 of 3: Has some interesting elements.

Metacritic Reviews


Critic Reviews



More Like This

Born Into Brothels: Calcutta's Red Light Kids

Born Into Brothels: Calcutta's Red Light Kids

Ray

Ray

The Queen

The Queen

Taxi to the Dark Side

Taxi to the Dark Side

An Inconvenient Truth

An Inconvenient Truth

The Last King of Scotland

The Last King of Scotland

La Vie en Rose

La Vie en Rose

Precious

Precious

Capote

Capote

The Nutty Professor

The Nutty Professor

Syriana

Syriana

Man on Wire

Man on Wire

Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Jennifer Hudson.


Quotes

Effie Melody White: So... Deena's going to sing the lead 'cause you like the way she looks? Am I ugly to you, Curtis?
Curtis Taylor Jr.: Baby, come on! You know how I feel about you, come on. Don't make it personal.
Effie Melody White: Well, what am I supposed to do? Deena's beautiful, and she's always been...


Goofs

During the success montage, the Dreams' "Dreamgirls" single is shown climbing up Billboard magazine's "Top LP's" albums chart, not its "Hot 100" singles chart.


Crazy Credits

The film begins immediately after the distribution studio logos, with no opening titles/credits of any kind.


Alternate Versions

In 2017, Paramount released a "Director's Extended Edition" of "Dreamgirls." This version runs ten minutes longer than the theatrical version and contains changes which include the following:

  • The opening talent show scene has extended performances of "I'm Looking' for Something'" and "Goin' Downtown," including a longer scene on the stairs outside the Detroit Theater, where Curtis offers Marty a cigarette and a sales pitch after Charlene and Joanne walk out on him, and Curtis catches a first glimpse of Deena
  • Sung dialogue leading up to "Steppin' to the Bad Side" ("You've got me to think for you now...") proceeds the scene in which Curtis tells Wayne and CC of his plan to sell off the car dealership, similar to the lead-up to the song in the original Broadway show. This scene takes the place of the shorter, spoken word alternate version used in the theatrical version
  • All shots of Wayne enacting Curtis' payload plans at radio stations are replaced with scenes of the Mafia members Curtis makes a deal with distributing the records and the money
  • The Jimmy & the Dreamettes performance section go "Steppin to the Bad Side" is extended
  • "Love You I Do" is extended by adding an instrumental break under the scene in which Michelle gets a job at Rainbow Records, and then showing Effie sing the song's second verse on camera
  • "Heavy" is extended by adding a break and a chorus, and placing more emphasis on Effie keeping an eye on Deena's image taking over the TV studio monitors
  • There is an extra shot of Curtis and Deena's mansion as Deena heads to the service car outside
  • An extra scene shows Curtis, C.C., Wayne and other Rainbow executives at a board meeting, at which Curtis decides to finance his "Cleopatra" film pet project with a 10th anniversary special (This scene includes two F-bombs by Jamie Foxx; the Director's Extended Edition is unrated as a result)
  • "Patience" is extended by adding extra choruses to the section in which Jimmy and Lorrell record the song, accompanied by a choir
  • "Perfect World" is extended by including a full verse and chorus
  • "I Meant You No Harm" and "Lorrell Loves Jimmy" are both extended by a few bars
  • Jimmy's silent glare at Deena basking in her fame at the Rainbow 10th anniversary TV special is replaced by sung dialogue ("Because I was here long before you...") similar to the "Firing of Jimmy" scene in the original Broadway show
  • "I Miss You, Old Friend" is extended by a few bars
  • "Effie, Sing My Song" - sung dialogue in which C.C. and Effie reconcile - is added in place of the spoken word alternate version used in the theatrical version
  • "One Night Only" is performed in full (only half is used in the theatrical version). At the conclusion of the song, Curtis' Mafia associates come to Effie's performance in Max Washington's bar, which is how they get word (and a tape) to alert Curtis
  • Curtis has an extra line of dialogue when being interviewed on the Dreams' farewell performance red carpet, in which he announces that his new artist, Tania Williams, will be releasing her debut album in a month


Soundtracks

Cadillac Car
Written by
Henry Krieger and Tom Eyen
Performed by Eddie Murphy, Jennifer Hudson, Beyoncé,
Anika Noni Rose, Rory O'Malley, Laura Bell Bundy, and Anne Elizabeth Warren
Produced by The Underdogs (Harvey Mason Jr. and Damon Thomas)
Published by Dreamgirls Music (ASCAP) admin. by Universal-Geffen Music and Dreamettes Music (BMI) admin. by Universal-Geffen Music

Storyline

Plot Summary


Synopsis (WARNING: Spoilers)


Genres

Drama | Music | Musical

Who Was the First Cast Member to Join 'Knives Out'?

Rian Johnson reveals who was the first person to sign on for his crime-comedy Knives Out, and who he expects to be a breakout star.

Watch now

Around The Web

 | 

Powered by ZergNet

More To Explore

Search on Amazon.com