I enjoyed the movie on one level. Certainly I thought Jennifer Hudson's and Eddie Murphy's performances were remarkable. And, as musicals go, this one was far better than most, and some of these songs could have legitimately stood on their own as great soul tracks from Motown or Stax.
But I guess I'm just not a musicals kind of guy. I admit that I'm not consistent about this. I'm just going by my gut reaction, and there's no logic to it. For some reason, I can watch rock 'n roll bands with painted faces, shooting fire out of their mouths or spitting blood, and just shrug it off and think, "Yep, just another normal day in Heavy Metal Hell." But when somebody switches from dialog to song in a play or movie, my mind can't make the transition. It was actually more difficult for me with Dreamgirls because many of the song lyrics were so pedestrian, and actually sounded like normal speech. The effect was something like this to my ears:
Diva (pleadingly): "Honey, would you pick up a pound of pastrami on your way home from work tonight?"
Boffo Tenor (with bravado): "Sure, right after I drop off the dry cleaning."
I just never want to sing about these things, and I'm always amazed when people do. I have similar problems with opera, although at least people are singing the whole way through, albeit in those sometimes boring recitatives that string the story along between the arias.