In 19th-century France, Jean Valjean, who for decades has been hunted by the ruthless policeman Javert after breaking parole, agrees to care for a factory worker's daughter. The decision changes their lives for ever.
A street-wise teen from Baltimore who has been raised by a single mother travels to New York City to spend the Christmas holiday with his estranged relatives, where he embarks on a surprising and inspirational journey.
Set in New York City's gritty East Village, the revolutionary rock opera RENT tells the story of a group of bohemians struggling to live and pay their rent. "Measuring their lives in love,"... See full summary »
After the death of his brother, An expert street dancer goes to Georgia to attend Truth University. But his efforts to get an education and woo the girl he likes are sidelined when he joins... See full summary »
Famous film director Guido Contini struggles to find harmony in his professional and personal lives, as he engages in dramatic relationships with his wife, his mistress, his muse, his agent, and his mother.
An aspiring author during the civil rights movement of the 1960s decides to write a book detailing the African-American maids' point of view on the white families for which they work, and the hardships they go through on a daily basis.
Whitney Houston's last film - she died during post production. The picture was to be an acting comeback for the singer, who had not appeared in a theatrical release since The Preacher's Wife (1996) in 1996. See more »
The venue mentioned as The Fillmore was actually named the State Theater at the time the film takes place. It didn't change to it's current name The Fillmore until 2007. See more »
Pop star Jordin Sparks stars alongside Whitney Houston (in her final performance of what was supposed to be the second wind of her acting career) in Sparkle, a remake of the 1976 cult hit among black audiences. Conversely, the 2012 version, centred around a trio of sisters who hit the big time in 1960s Motown before being crippled by the lures of fame, is entirely devoid of any personality or soul, playing out like every other African-American themed shambles this side of Tyler Perry's repeated disasters.
Director Salim Akil (an apparent prodigy of Perry's stylings) breaths plastic life into the cardboard cut-outs he calls characters. Almost every stereotype conceivable in the dram-rom genre is on full display, including the preachy reverend, the tough girl, the abusive husband, the heavy-handed mother and her introverted daughter.
The performances across the board are sound, but a practically non-existent screenplay renders any interaction between characters essentially worthless. Even at a touch under two hours, Sparkle severely overstays its welcome. Given the similar plot frame and emphasis on glitz-and-glamour music, comparisons to Aussie crowd-pleaser The Sapphires are to be expected, but where the local production made its intentions clear from the outset, Sparkle rambles and labours, pleading with its audiences to maintain an unwarranted sliver of attention in the lead up to a drab and bitterly predictable conclusion.
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