Originally posted 08/17/2012 08:40AM
I walked in hoping Sparkle
would be reminiscent of Dreamgirls
– another flashy remake about a singing trio in the 1960s with show-stopping musical performances, glittering gowns and, well, sparkle. That was not the case. Not even close.
plays Sparkle, a meek songwriter in Detroit with a secret ambition to be "bigger than Diana [Ross]." Though her controlling mother (the late Whitney Houston
, in her final performance), has forbidden her from going into music, Sparkle secretly convinces her sisters, Dolores (Tika Sumpter) and Sister (Carmen Ejogo), to form a trio.
After their first taste of success, the women grapple with the darker side of fame – in other words, the clichéd battle with drugs and an abusive man.
While the film's melodrama is laughable (after Sister's comedian beau, played by Mike Epps, flops at a club, the two run – in slow-motion
– to the car), the real problem is that it's unclear who the main character is supposed to be.