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          I was just reading the New York Times review of the new film, Chicago. In it, the reviewer says that Catherine Zeta-Jones "pumps her majestic, long legs like the cylinders of a Corvette about to redline, but always knowing exactly when to stop short of throwing a piston." Wow! I've always wanted to write a sentence like that. But that sentence pretty much describes Chicago, the famous stage musical which has now been brought to the screen starring, in addition to Zeta-Jones, Renee Zellweger and Richard Gere.  They not only star but, as it says in the closing credits, these three mega-movie stars do all of their own singing and dancing.  Of course, because this is a movie and not live, they don't have to sing whole songs and dance whole numbers without edits.  And in this post-Moulin-Rouge world, it isn't very long between edits.  But don't get me wrong, they all do very well.  Zellweger had never sung in public before this and had no dance training, at least, until the 10 months of voice and dance coaching before filming Chicago.  Zeta-Jones and Gere, on the other hand, started out their careers singing and dancing onstage.  I was very impressed with all three of them.

     Which star of this movie is also starring simultaneously in The Hours and Gangs of New York? Yes, it's John C. Reilly! Who? Well, as soon as you see his face, you will recognize him. He has become one of the best character actors around with recent roles in Boogie Nights, Magnolia, and The Perfect Storm.  He was nominated for a Golden Globe for Chicago.  Also a stand out in a supporting role is Queen Latifah.  Both she and Reilly show, in their musical numbers, that they are at least the equal of the above-the-title stars.  Two refugees from Ally McBeal, Lucy Liu and Taye Diggs also appear.  Taye does a good job but what was Lucy thinking? Her part is nothing.

    You may wonder why I haven't said anything about the story of Chicago. Who cares!  It is a great musical and I am happy to have seen it.  I am very sorry that I never saw it on the stage because that is where you should see it.  It is too big for the screen. Ok, ok, here's the story.  A vaudeville star (Zeta-Jones) finds out that her husband and her sister are having an affair so she kills them.  A woman who wants to be a star (Zellweger) is sleeping with a guy who promises to make her a star. When he doesn't come through, she too becomes a murderer, and ends up in the same prison as Zeta-Jones where the Warden (Latifah) does a little business on the side, and sees to it that both women have a flashy defence lawyer (Gere).  Zellweger's husband (Reilly) wouldn't take the rap for her but stands loyally by.  Oh ya and there's some singing and dancing.  It's the music by Kander and Ebb and the dance by Bob Fosse that are the real stars of Chicago.  Who cares who did what to whom.