Following on the heels of the very successful series of books by Deborah Gregory; The Cheetah Girls are finally available on DVD. If you're not familiar with the books, here's a quick run down. Four teenage girls follow their dreams of becoming famous; the four "Cheetahs" sing and dance and are very talented. The gals live in New York, yet the film's actual back-drop is Toronto.
Each of the "Cheetahs" posses their own unique personality and this film takes time to acquaint us with each one. Galleria (Raven-Symone) is the leader of the group. The cute blond dancer, Dorinda (Sabrina Bryan) tries to hide that she was adopted. Energetic, Chanel (Adrianne Bailon) compensates a lack of interest from her mom by constantly buying new clothes.
While The Cheetah girls are practicing for their school talent show an influential music manager, Jackal Johnson (Vincent Corazza) discovers the girls. Johnson promises the girls the moon and the stars not to mention that they will each become rich and famous (what a catch phrase). However, the girls have to pay the price for stardom. Johnson insists on changing each of the girl's identity; essentially making them his "puppets." The influential music manager forces the girls to wear masks and sing a dull song as part of their new image. At this point the girls start to appraise the price they have to pay for fame.
Will the girls stand up for their principles or plunge into commercialization? Watch the film and you'll find out. Highlights of the film include: all of the eclectic music tracks (from hip-hop, Latin rhythms to pop). My favorite moment of the film is Galleria's barking small white dog Toto and the dog's appraisal of each newly composed song. Watch this film for the music and not the acting; this is a fun light film served well with a tall glass of chilled lemonade.
Special features include:
Alternative ending; equally amusing to the original.
Watch all of the music videos from the film.
Behind the scenes; the girls explain how they felt throughout the filming.