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Dreamgirls

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Entertaining screen version of 1981 Broadway hit charting the rise of a Motown-like 1960s girl group (Beyonce Knowles, Anika Noni Rose and Sharon Leal), and the heavyset lead singer (Jennifer Hudson) they push out of the group when she doesn't match their new svelte image, as well as an R&B singer (Eddie Murphy), and the ruthless manager (Jamie Foxx) who guides all their careers. Director Bill Condon has skillfully refashioned the show for the screen turning most of the sung recitatives into spoken dialogue, and there are especially good performances from Murphy and newcomer Hudson. Despite some flagged material, the overarching themes of loyalty, doing the "right thing," dedication to family and friends, and overcoming adversity are key. Romantic complications including adultery, a child born out of wedlock, crude language, some innuendo, mild profanity, drug use and some onstage vulgarity. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

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Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus: The actions of these two influential Jewish leaders give insight into the charismatic power of Jesus and his teachings—and the risks that could be involved in following him.
<p><b>Joseph</b> was a respected, wealthy civic leader who had become a disciple of Jesus. Following the death of Jesus, Joseph obtained Jesus' body from Pilate, wrapped it in fine linen and buried it. For these reasons Joseph is considered the patron saint of funeral directors and pallbearers. More important is the courage Joseph showed in asking Pilate for Jesus' body. Jesus was a condemned criminal who had been publicly executed. According to some legends, Joseph was punished and imprisoned for such a bold act.
</p><p><b>Nicodemus</b> was a Pharisee and, like Joseph, an important first-century Jew. We know from John's Gospel that Nicodemus went to Jesus at night—secretly—to better understand his teachings about the kingdom. Later, Nicodemus spoke up for Jesus at the time of his arrest and assisted in Jesus' burial. We know little else about Nicodemus.
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