Monday 26 March 2007

And I am telling you

The Queen

The weekend was eventful enough; I went out to see another film, the second in as many weeks. I enjoyed watching The Queen; being a monarchist, Ilyena Vasilievna Mironov (Dame Helen Mirren) made an excellent portrayal Elizabeth Regina II though I was not sure if it was really deserving of the accolades considering other performances like that of Dame Judi Dench.

Cherie Blair no doubt was seriously caricatured, her curtsies looking like she was about to break a leg, well, someone had to look silly in the film and only Helen Mirren really looked the part. Three hearty cheers for The Queen.


So, yesterday, even though I have not been that much of an Eddie Murphy fan, I had to see Dreamgirls and it was only showing at one cinema in the centre of Amsterdam.

We chose the 17:45 slot which happened to be a time when bubblegum chewing girls with voices louder than a freight train were free to roam the streets, Never Again! Said I.

As luck would have it, every automatic thing in the cinema had broken down, the ticket machine, the tiller machines, the cash registers at the tills and the pop-corn stands everything was lines and crosses on paper - what an evening, but it turned out right.

Jennifer Hudson as Effie White was a star and her rendition of And I am telling you I'm not going was a class act that brought the house down. Strangely, I first heard this song performed as a mime by a drag queen in London called the Skinny Bitch some 15 or so years ago, it was quite a spectacle, but the energy in the song was all-empowering, you could not but be moved.

Deserving accolades

In fact, being nominated for 24 awards on your debut as a film star and winning 16 including the Golden Globe, BAFTA and Oscar is testament to the fact that some of these so-called musical talent shows have no eye for pure and raw talent. Or rather like Curtis Taylor, Jr. played by Jamie Foxx said of the other star in the show, her voice had too much of a personality such that it could not be moulded into commercial success rather than a showcase of talent with genius and sonorous quality.

One other thing about Jennifer Hudson that should not be missed is her gratitude to her fans, the people who stayed true to her abilities as it all blossomed into what everyone now wants a part of.

Pause for deep thought

In her words quoted from the IMDB record of her quotes, I read this.

"In a recent interview, I was asked how I reconciled being a Christian with performing at events for my gay fans. I find it upsetting that some folks equate being a Christian with being intolerant of gay people. That may, unfortunately, be true for some, but it is not true for me.

I have talked often of my love and support of the gay community. I have said again and again that it was the gay community that supported me long before and long after American Idol, and kept me working and motivated. It is the gay community that celebrated my voice and my size and my personality long before Dreamgirls.

Yes, I was raised Baptist. Yes, I was taught that the Bible has certain views on homosexuality. The Bible also teaches us not to judge. It teaches us to love one another as God loves us all. I love my sister, my two best friends and my director dearly. They happen to be gay. So what? While some search for controversy, I hope that my friends and fans who know me, know where I stand."

There are probably a few big sermons, a call to humility and a moving message in there.

However, moving on, Dreamgirls was based on a Broadway show of the same name that first ran in the year Ms. Hudson was born and this was loosely based on the story of the Supremes, the rivalry of Florence Ballard with Diana Ross and the influence of Berry Gordy in the whole matter.

Birthday wishes

Somehow, I find that my outrageously handsome babyface kid-brother shares his birthday today with Diana Ross who is 63 and believe it or not, The Rt. Hon William Hague who clocks 46, once the leader of the Tory Party. I wish them all, many happy returns.

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