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Sparkle
Sparkle
Actors: Philip Michael Thomas, Irene Cara, Lonette McKee, Dwan Smith, Mary Alice
Director: Sam O'Steen
Genres: Drama, Musicals & Performing Arts, African American Cinema
PG     2007     1hr 38min

Irene Cara (Fame) and Lonette McKee (Round Midnight) sing and struggle their way to show-business glory in a Supremes-like girl group. Dynamite Curtis Mayfield soundtrack.

     

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Movie Details

Actors: Philip Michael Thomas, Irene Cara, Lonette McKee, Dwan Smith, Mary Alice
Director: Sam O'Steen
Creators: Bruce Surtees, Gordon Scott, Beryl Vertue, Howard Rosenman, Peter Brown, Joel Schumacher
Genres: Drama, Musicals & Performing Arts, African American Cinema
Sub-Genres: Family Life, Musicals & Performing Arts, African American Cinema
Studio: Warner Home Video
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 09/04/2007
Release Year: 2007
Run Time: 1hr 38min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
MPAA Rating: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Languages: English
Subtitles: English
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Movie Reviews

"Sparkle" SPARKLES!
The Fancy One | Westchester County, NY | 09/30/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I saw this film in the movies as a teenager and I've never forgotten how it made me laugh, cry and want to sing right along. "Sparkle" is the fictional story of the struggles of three Harlem sisters who are trying to make it in the music business in the late 1950s, but each of them encounter individual problems on the road to fame. Only one of the sisters eventually go on to stardom, while one gets engulfed into the street life, with heartbreaking results, and the other hates the life she's living and decides to leave for good.

There are fine performances in this movie. Irene Cara (who plays "Sparkle"), Lonette McKee, and Dorian Harewood are particular standouts. Look for future "Miami Vice" star, Philip Michael Thomas, as Sparkle's enterprising boyfriend. It has been compared to Broadway's "Dreamgirls" and the Supremes' story, but it has its own strengths, plus a slammin' soundtrack, written and produced by the late, great Curtis Mayfield, and sung by the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin. "Something He Can Feel" is STILL the jam. I gave it four stars because the ending was predictable, but all around this is a wonderful film. Highly recommended. Now where's the DVD?"
MY FAVORITE MOVIE!
Nanette Sims | Detroit, MI United States | 01/04/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I must say Sparkle is my favorite movie. I've seen it probably hundreds of times since the 70's. Lonette McKee and Irene Cara were great in this movie. Making it big in the "Music Business" was their dream until Sister (Lonette McKee) let something over power her dreams. Fortunately, Sparkle (Irene Cara) was able to succeed with the help and encouragement of her boyfriend Stix (Philip Michael Thomas). This is definitely an African-American Classic. I hear there's going to be a remake of this film soon. It may be good, but it will never come close to the original."
BEST Movie hidden!!!
Bookpages | 05/02/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Sparkle is a classic and excellent cast and directed film. This movie is hidden from getting the attention that is deserves. The story and acting is superb! It's a classic movie in the class with "The Imitation of Life" (but a different type of story here). I STRONGLY recommend this film."
What Can I Do? Buy This DVD!!
Duane | Philadelphia, PA | 12/15/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I thought for sure this DVD would be released in 2001 for a 25th year anniversary. When that year can and went, I figured 2006 would be the year of release for the movie's 30th year anniversary. Oh well, at least the DVD is finally being released.

The release of this movie in 1976 was a big deal in Detroit, because it was the movie debut of Detroit native Lonette McKee. She even attended the Detroit premiere! Her reviews were great, and she had appearances on many talk shows afterwards--including Dinah Shore's. On one show, she expressed disappointment that an album featuring the songs as sung by her, Irene Cara, and others in the movie wasn't released, but thanked Aretha Franklin for recording an album featuring the songs from the film. She was later cast as Ali's wife in the movie 'The Greatest', but later quit after creative differences with the director. She was then cast as one of the female co-stars in the hilarious 1977 movie 'Which Way Is Up?' with Richard Pryor (who had taken McKee under his wing and who she was rumored to have been dating). Her next big movie role was in 'The Cotton Club' in 1984, where she played a Cotton Club girl who later passes for white to get gigs in higher-paying clubs. Other roles include Haley's tv movie 'Queen' (where she played a slave who passes for white) and Oprah Winfrey's tv movie 'The Women of Brewster Place' (where she played a lesbian school teacher fearful of losing her job if her sexuality became known).

Back to 'Sparkle'...One of my all-time favorite movie characters is the tall, sexy, strutting, long-haired, high-yellow, gum-chewing, I'm-hot-and-I-know-it Sister! McKee owns the movie, and the three girls in red dresses singing "Hooked On Your Love" is a screen classic! Irene Cara is the perfect choice for the sweet, innocent Sparkle. Many often joke about pretty Dwan Smith's Delores character--mainly because she looks so unlike her supposed sisters in the film ("she was adopted"..."Effie had an affair with a black man when Delores was conceived"). But she is great as the tough, proud middle sister. Then there's Tony King as the villian Satin, and Philip Michael Thomas as the good guy Stix. (Hmmm...should I address the color complexion issue? How the lightest of the girls is considered the "prettiest girl in Harlem", how the darkest guy is the evil bad guy, and how...no, forget it! Lets just enjoy the movie!)

I love that the DVD is a 2-disc set!! I assume this means that we will get many special features! Cast interviews? Deleted scenes? A 'the making of...' documentary? Can't wait to see!"