Exactly three weeks ago the movie Sparkle started its run in Nigerian cinema. This actually is closer to its release on DVD than its release in cinema and made me ask: ‘Why bother?’
Anyways this review is coming now because it was recently released, I recently watched it and I wanted to write something on the last time the ‘Legendary’ Whitney Houston appeared on big screen; if not I probably would have just let it slide.
[toggle title=”Plot/Production“]I don’t know how many African-American girl groups in real life had a tragic back story leading to their success or demise or break-up into solo careers but I know for some reason, stories involving such a tale seem to be quite popular.
Wouldn’t it be funny if all of it had its roots only in the one story of The Supremes?
Why does popular behind the scenes drama often make girl-groups more popular?
Even Destiny’s Child can attribute a bit of their fame to such a story too (although no one will truly know what happened there). Come to think of it has anyone wondered about Beyonce´ playing that role in Dreamgirls after her real life role in DC?
Why are these stories popular enough to garner so many remakes? (Sparkle is a remake of a 1976 film of the same name)
I guess drama sells well! Anyways the film was an OK story, but for a musical I expected to be touched greatly by at least one of the songs on the soundtrack; that has not happened yet.[/toggle]
[toggle title=”Cast“]Sparkle played by Jordin Sparks
Ok, so she had the lead role and plays it well but I really didn’t enjoy her character until she went to Columbia to demand her right. For all the ladies out there, I think being all shy and appearing vulnerable does not appeal to most; I’m sure that’s what they wanted anyway and for a rookie actress it just didn’t make her memorable (does anyone remember Jenifer Hudson in Dreamgirls)
Now unto the role, I believe that too many people live their lives this way. It’s quite amazing how much people believe more in the words of others or what others think about them than what they think about themselves. I am not asking you to deceive yourself; I’m asking you to believe in yourself regardless of others believing in you.
Emma played by Whitney Houston
It’s quite amazing to see someone who (from stories about her) struggled with wrong decisions up unto the point of her death play a role that’s a picture of where she should have been in real life. It’s quite sad she didn’t make it past this year and that she had that much of a spiral in her life. She did have her own contributions though and I do hope she finds rest.
As for her character, I believe that parenting is not a black and white phenomenon and that every child’s relationship to his/her parent is peculiar but I believe the forcedness and do it my way or no way mentality, usually hinders proper communication between parties. Same thing happened in Brave.
For all the parents out there, just one advice, teach your children the word of God, pray over them and speak great words to them encouraging and pouring life into them and let the word do the work. Being forceful does not work; it may show you some results for some time but it doesn’t last.
Sister played by Carmen Ejogo
Sister! Seriously? That was my first thought when I heard her name but as the movie went on I kinda got used to hearing the name Sister. Lol!
I’m not so enamoured by tragic life stories that are based on repeated mistakes that could have been avoided but I will say that Carmen stole the show in this film. I have never seen her before now (as I’m sure is the case with most of you too) and her name sounds like someone who could have Nigerian descendants (or is it just me) but this young lady was no doubt the best of the actors in the movie. I believe that the fact that I didn’t like her character proves to me that she portrayed it really well.
If you ever find yourself making decisions based on pressures from others, please take a step back and remember, it’s your life and you get to live it, not any other person. Please make quality decisions because from this movie you see that Carmen’s life went spiralling based on her poor decisions.[/toggle]
[toggle title=”Supporting Cast“]Out of all the sisters, I liked Dee (Tika Sumpter) best; she was level-headed, focused and took no-nonsense from anybody; she had her confidence going for her.
Derek Luke and Omari Hardwick did well, although Derek’s character messed up too much in my opinion and Omari’s character allowed bitterness step in after the ordeal with Sister.
As for Mike Epps who plays Satin (sounds very similar to that guy Satan doesn’t it), he played a role that is so prevalent in the world today; a lot of people find themselves falling prey to vices such as this because all they are looking for or all they want to see is the flashy surface.[/toggle]
The problem I have with movies such as Sparkle though is that they just tell you a story about the problem, most never get the solution out there which is: Get knowledgeable about the one who loves you unconditionally and let the proof of his love and the potency in his words about you give you that life no human entity can tamper with.
Sparkle was a good film, not really great by my standards, but an OK film nonetheless.
Let us have your thoughts in the comments! Cheers!