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CHICAGO (article first published : 2003-03-20)

As regular artSMart readers will know, I don’t normally do the movie crits but this one blew me away so I had to throw in my tuppenceworth, as it were.

If you are at all interested in musical theatre at its best, stunning performances, brilliant direction, great choreography, superb staging and sublime lighting then you’ll be nuts not to head for Gateway’s Ster Kinekor and the current showing of the movie version of Chicago

Added to the accolades are the considerable drawcards of the film’s stars – the fascinating Renee Zellweger, glorious Catherine Zeta-Jones and charismatic Richard Gere.

All three do justice to Kander and Ebb’s great score although I missed hearing one of my favourites from the stage show, Class.

From the initial shot which is a massive close-up of an eye, there’s a beautiful sleazy feel to production which is set in Chicago in 1929. My favourites numbers were Cell Block Tango, When You’re Good to Mama and Razzle Dazzle. The scene in the courtroom where Billy Flynn succeeds in getting Roxie Hart off a murder charge is absolutely brilliant and shows that Richard Gere is no slouch as a tap dancer.

Don’t miss it. – Caroline Smart




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