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Sept. 27, 2001 – We tried, really tried, to find a web critic with something good to say about "Glitter," Mariah Carey's first major-role feature film. This is the best we could do:
Apollo Movie Guide: It's just a bland and tiresome, utterly predictable rags-to-riches story of a pop music star and her difficult personal life … shallow sentiment, awful dialogue, loose plot threads, a sucky romantic subplot and ugly voice dubbing in places.
Mr. Showbiz: Only diehard Mariah Carey fans, 11-year-old girls, or anyone truly desperate to escape [Sept. 11's] terror might find some reason to sit through this bland, bloated, self-addressed valentine … Sure, Mariah's no actress — her technique, bless her wide-eyed-songbird little heart, is just a compendium of throaty whispers and raised "Oh, no, you didn't!" eyebrows — but she's got nothing to work with.
The Cranky Critic: "Glitter" is an idea which was never developed into a full story … incompetently directed and filled with visually tortuous gimmicky edits and effects … Very little in this film looks anything like what those days [1980s] were like. A lot of it has to do with the "no drugs allowed" policy of current films. Some of it has to do with the fact that no research seems to have been done about how the biz works.
Hollywood.com: It is difficult to gauge Carey's performance in this film since she does not have that many lines. The ones she does have are so clichéd it is almost difficult to keep a straight face when she utters them. "Glitter" is also littered with slow-motion shots that are accompanied with dumb swooshing sounds. It's a musically inclined film without a decent soundtrack to back it.
The story, should you still care, is about Billie (Carey), a mixed-race singer who rises from poverty to become a star. Publicity goes to extremes to say it's not the Mariah Carey story, which of course raises the question of why they would do that. Billie's life is peopled by two girlfriends (Da Brat, Tia Texada) from their childhood in an orphanage, a pimp/producer (Terrence Howard), a DJ/producer/seducer (Max Beesley), and her mother (Valarie Pettiford).
The most emotional pang of the whole pic may be the shots of New York City with the World Trade Center towers still in place.
Carey's only previous experience on the big screen was in a supporting role in "the Bachelor" in 1999. Now, she already has another film in the can, a mob comedy, "Wisegirls."
Rated PG-13. Playing at Market Square East on St. Thomas.

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