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Chicago (2002)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Crime, Musical | 24 January 2003 (USA)
Murderesses Velma Kelly and Roxie Hart find themselves on death row together and fight for the fame that will keep them from the gallows in 1920s Chicago.

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(screenplay), (book) | 2 more credits »
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629 ( 3)

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Won 6 Oscars. Another 49 wins & 121 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Cliff Saunders ...
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Roman Podhora ...
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Robert Smith ...
Newspaper Photographer (as Rob Smith)
Sean Wayne Doyle ...
Reporter
Steve Behal ...
Prison Clerk
Robbie Rox ...
Prison Guard
...
Nickie
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Storyline

Murderesses Velma Kelly (a chanteuse and tease who killed her husband and sister after finding them in bed together) and Roxie Hart (who killed her boyfriend when she discovered he wasn't going to make her a star) find themselves on death row together and fight for the fame that will keep them from the gallows in 1920s Chicago. Written by Debpp322

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The one movie that has it all. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Musical

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for sexual content and dialogue, violence and thematic elements | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

24 January 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Chicago: The Musical  »

Box Office

Budget:

$45,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£113,386 (UK) (27 December 2002)

Gross:

$170,684,505 (USA) (29 August 2003)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

(mock newsreel)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cinematographer Dion Beebe was on his way to a theater in London to watch the musical when he got a phone call from his agent telling him that director Rob Marshall was interested in having him shoot the film. See more »

Goofs

Depending on whether you go by the timeline of the 1924 Broadway play, the 1927 silent movie, or whatever year the 1975 musical revival represents this film certainly takes place in the 1920s. Early in the film Mama Morton is heard mentioning going to Big Jim Colosimo's, a famous gangster of the era. Big Jim was murdered in 1920 and couldn't have been alive in the mid 1920s. Also 'bobbed hairstyles' were not a norm in the year 1920. Women would have still been wearing long hair as they had before WW1 in the Victorian and Edwardian eras. See more »

Quotes

Roxie: And then I started foolin' around... and then I started screwin' around, which is foolin' around without dinner.
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Crazy Credits

Near the end of the credits, just so there are no doubts: Catherine Zeta-Jones' singing and dancing performed by Catherine Zeta-Jones Renée Zellweger's singing and dancing performed by Renée Zellweger Richard Gere's singing and dancing performed by Richard Gere See more »

Connections

Referenced in Schmo Boat (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Cell Block Tango
(1975)
Music by John Kander
Lyrics by Fred Ebb
Performed by Catherine Zeta-Jones, Susan Misner, Denise Faye, Deidre Goodwin, Ekaterina Chtchelkanova, and Mya (as Mýa Harrison)
Published by Unichappell Music, Inc. (BMI)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Entertainment with an edge
26 February 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

(Note: Over 500 of my movie reviews are now available in my book "Cut to the Chaise Lounge or I Can't Believe I Swallowed the Remote!" Get it at Amazon.)

This is a musical in the tradition of musicals that are entertaining and easy to digest, and yet some hours later leave one with some apprehension. Is it really the intent of the story to celebrate getting away with murder? Or is this movie a statement about how murder by women in emotionally trying circumstances can be justified? Or perhaps is this an indictment of the criminal justice system? Or is this just a spicy entertainment? I'll opt for the latter; however I can tell you that women will find this more agreeable than their spouses. There is a kind of historically revisionist feeling to the sentiments expressed. I seriously doubt that this production, in which murder from jealousy is seemingly justified, would have been produced as a musical comedy before the modern era.

But never mind. What makes Bob Fosse's Chicago a hit (and the Academy's Best Picture of 2002) are the beautifully staged and choreographed song and dance numbers, the spiffy direction and neat editing, a lot of leggy flesh along with some fine performances by Queen Latifah, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Renee Zellweger.

In particular I liked Queen Latifah's performance. When she comes on singing "When You're Good to Momma" she just about brings the house down. I also liked her portrayal of the savvy and corrupt Boss Lady on Murderess Row. Zeta-Jones got the Oscar for best Supporting Actress, and she was good, but I think Latifah, who was also nominated, was just as impressive if not more so.

Zellweger, looking almost anorectic compared to the last time I saw her in Bridget Jones's Diary (2001)--released only the year before--gives a solid performance in a very demanding role, although to be honest, it appeared that she was doing a lot of lipsyncing. Still one is amazed at how good she and Zeta-Jones were at the old song and dance, not having been previous known for being twinkled-toed.

You might want to see this to compare how it stands up to a long line of filmland musicals, such as Oklahoma, South Pacific, Jesus Christ Superstar, The Phantom of the Opera, etc. Chicago certainly is well within the confines of that venerable traditional, although it is my feeling, that despite the Academy's favor, this is just a notch below the best.


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