best films: #51: CHICAGO (2002)

The once-lauded Chicago may’ve lost some steam since it dominated the 2002 Academy Awards, but the backlash had absolutely no effect on my opinion of it. I still think it’s one of the best movie musicals, full of cocky, tastefully over-the-top performances, awesome period costumes, and a killer soundtrack with performers who can actually belt it (to varying degrees, of course). Referenced in previous posts here and here, Chicago may not have been the best of the year, but it featured some of the best performances in filmdom. Catherine Zeta-Jones has never been better before or since as the saucy minx Velma Kelly. She probably garners best in show cred for this flick. As for the rest, Queen Latifah is great fun with her big booming voice and likable screen presence; Renee Zellweger is at the top of her game (think Bridget Jones’ Diary) as the conniving, fame-hungry Roxie Hart; Richard Gere is at least good, which is something he doesn’t often manage; and John C. Reilly is admirable as the dumbstruck devoted husband. And with too many great musical numbers to mention, I’ll simply say that it has enough pizzazz for 10 musicals. (Plus, how great is that poster?!)

Standout Performance: Who are we kidding, I’ve got to go with Zeta-Jones, though I’m all for recognizing that Zellweger was great as well, something that seems to have been forgotten by most.
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One response to “best films: #51: CHICAGO (2002)”

  1. Jose says :

    I agree with how good the ladies are but I was astounded at the kind of performance Richard Gere could give after watching this.It's a shame he's done nothing of the sort since.

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