Tuesday 18th January 2022

Chicago (12A)
Directed by: Rob Marshall
Reviewed by: Paul Fonz
Renée checks her B.O.
Renée checks her B.O.

When it comes to musicals, the extent of my experience stops at repeated viewings of South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut and one hung-over New Year's Day spent watching The Sound Of Music, in which Julie Andrews seemed to supplement her living by stealing curtains and selling the material to a man called "Gaylord" (I must admit I wasn't paying as much attention as I probably should have).

All of which meant I wasn't sure what to expect from the Hollywood adaptation of the West End classic Chicago, especially as I had never seen the stage production and had hardly even glanced at its posters on the underground.

However, despite my best intentions to be as masculinely stoical as possible, it only took three or four musical "numbers" to win me over, largely due to the excellent performances of Richard Gere, Catherine Zeta-Jones and numerous raunchy dancers.

Of course, while the sexy dancers help to keep men as shallow as me entertained throughout the musical numbers, it takes more than titillation to make a great movie. In a musical, it surely takes brilliant performances from the stars, great costumes, spectacular film-sets and a fast pace to sweep the audience from scene-to-scene and song-to-song. Thankfully, the director Rob Marshall ensured that Chicago has all of these wonderful qualities.

Renée Zellweger's performance as the heroine Roxie was very good too, although not quite as magnificent as that of her co-stars. I also thought she was a little too skinny to play such a voluptuous character (who has been played on the stage by Denise Van Outen, and more recently, Gaby Roslin).

Overall, I found Chicago thoroughly entertaining, reasonably funny and it genuinely had me tapping along at times, which I think is all I can really expect from a musical. I'm sure if musicals are more your cup of tea, though, you'd find it even more agreeable. A great movie for a girl's night out, or, with Valentine's Day approaching, it’s ideal to take your girlfriend to see.

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Length: 113 minutes
Certificate: 12A
Official Site:
IMDB Link:
Release Date: 17th January 2003

Top Five Rating: 80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0%80.0% (80.0%)
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