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Sparkle 

The soap opera feel could use some ruthless editing

click to enlarge Serious dress envy
  • Serious dress envy

Motown melodies aren’t enough to save Salim Akil’s (Jumping the Broom) Sparkle and its meandering plot. In 1960s Detroit, three sisters form a clandestine musical trio, keeping it secret from their religious, single mother, Emma (the late Whitney Houston), who has her own tragic past in show business. Sparkle (American Idol’s Jordin Sparks) composes the songs—meanwhile, Delores (Tika Sumpter), a medical school hopeful, and Tammy (Carmen Ejogo), a.k.a. Sister, a confused sex kitten, are in it for the money. At two hours long, Sparkle feels more like a soap opera, with a myriad of directorial styles, and sprawling scenes. Though the story takes some ridiculous, melodramatic turns, there’s nothing particularly surprising or insightful about this movie. It could be improved with some ruthless editing.

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