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Visual & Performing Arts
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Chicago the musical (Essay Sample)

Need to write a paper about the movie and to describe the music in the movie source..

Chicago the musical
Chicago is a movie adaptation of a musical stage, with the film exploring the experiences of scandalized celebrities set in the roaring 1920’s in Chicago (Marshall, 2002). Roxie Hart, an impressionable chorus dancer and wannabe celebrity married to Amos, engages in an extra marital affair to gain fame and celebrity status. After seeing Velma Kelly, perform a song in the beginning of the movie, Hart desires to a get famous by whatever means. Later, Hart is arrested on suspicion of murdering her boyfriend that causes a lot of media coverage. Similarly, Kelly stands accused of shooting her husband and sister. Consequently, the two women remain in jail with rivalry ensuing from their encounter. Roxie gets more media attention and hires her rival’s lawyer leading to intense rivalry.
In contrast, to other musical productions, Chicago has songs and dances appearing less frequently. In essence, the songs and dances appear to occur in the mind of Roxie including her imaginations about tap dance. The start of the movie with a song, signals that both songs and dances were common forms of entertainment in Chicago during the 1920’s. Symbolic of the Jazz era, Velma dances both solos and duets in a provocative manner. Jazz music, jazz dance music and tap dance characterize the film in various acts. Roxie uses mezzo vocal range while her rival Velma uses alto (Marshall, 2002).
In ensuing drama in the movie, both Roxie and Velma recognize that in jail no one can help. Consequently, Roxie decides that trying new tricks is likely to bring more publicity, getting pregnant is the next best option available to Roxie. On one hand, Velma decides to tell the lawyer about her new tricks before the trial begins. On the other, Roxie seems to have an inflated ego to the extent of sacking the lawyer. However, she reverses her action after learning that an inmate had been put to death. After Roxie’s acquittal she dances to a new song with Velma, Roxie’s song on ‘Funny Honey’ shows that she actually loved her husband in spite of infidelity.
Chicago aptly captures the changing social relations in America in the 1920’s. Even though the society was still conservative, there was improved economic situation, but Chicago may have had many gangsters (Hurd, 2007). Equally, there were changing social attitudes with women having more liberal views with regard to dressing and engagement in entertainment activities that involved drinking. There were also changes in attitudes towards sex and marriage. The scandals that brought both Roxie and Velma together in jail involved infidelity. With more focus on the role of women in the society, there was more acceptance of divorce than earlier times though the topic still remained controversial.
In essence, Chicago captures the period covering the1920’s when the public rebelled against public legislation of moral values. Even with chang...
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