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    March 6, 2011


    BURLESQUE (18)

    Genre: Drama/Musical
    Release Date: 17 February 2011
    Running Time: 119 minutes
    Distributor: Screen Gems Sony Pictures
    Director: Steve antin
    Screenplay: Steve Antin, Diablo Cody
    Starring: Cher, Christina Aguilera, Eric Dane, Kristen Bell, Stanley Tucci, Cam Gigandet

    Plot: Ali (Christina Aguilera) is a small-town girl with a big voice who follows her dreams all the way to Los Angeles. After stumbling upon The Burlesque Lounge, a majestic but ailing theatre that is home to an inspired musical revue, Ali lands a job as a cocktail waitress from Tess (Cher), the club's proprietor and headliner. Burlesque's outrageous costumes and bold choreography enrapture the young ingenue, who vows to perform there one day. Soon enough, Ali makes friends with a dancer named Georgia (Julianne Hough), finds an enemy in a jealous performer named Nikki (Kristen Bell) and wins the eye of bartender musician Jack (Cam Gigandet). With the help of a sharp-witted stage manager (Stanley Tucci) and gender-bending host named Alexis (Alan Cumming), Ali makes her way from the bar to the stage. Her spectacular voice restores the lounge to its former glory, though not before a charismatic entrepreneur (Eric Dane) arrives with an enticing proposal.

    Reviews: What makes a million dollar fortune if not because of the spectacular songs and dances choreographed so well? What makes another million dollar if not by putting Cher and Christina Aguilera, supposedly the pair of diva dream-team together up on the stage? But a huge bulk of fortune is lost because of the expected element of the story that fails to live up the expectation - plot and real deal, of course. After all, Burlesque is a celebration of life into the job as an entertainer on the stage of the world. Now brush up your dancing skills and prepare for the down-fall of what's coming.

    The story of Burlesque follows the life of Ali Rose (Christina Aguilera), a young and hard-done-by girl who works in a bar in a small town in Iowa. Reliving her dream, she traveled to Los Angeles to pursue her dream of taking up the stage and charms the audience with her voice. She ends up at a burlesque bar and she tried to persuade Tess (Cher) the owner of the club who refused to give her a chance to prove that she can sing, leaving her the familiar duty of waitress under Jack (Cam Gigandet). Later, Tess hires Ali as a dancer for the bar.

    One night, Nikki (Kristen Bell), the most famous dancer in the bar is not allowed to go up stage to perform by Tess because of her erratic behavior and getting herself drunk. Tess puts Ali to replace Nikki for the night but the jealousy has Nikki cuts out the music and lands Ali into a big trouble. Overcoming the situation well, Ali instead impresses the audience with her own voice and gaining the reputation as the new star of the bar.

    Burlesque is another example of under-dog becoming big-dog in the end. It feels formulaic, campy and cliched to see the same situation where a small girl from rural area, entering the big city and becomes a superstar. The premise been the same is not the big deal, but then everything feels like you have seen before somewhere else. Hence, Burlesque failed to establish its own of trademark and better still, its own taste of story that differs from the other. Burlesque depends on its star-studded line up of Cher, Christina Aguilera, Kristen Bell, Cam Gigandet and Stanley Tucci to anchor forward a rather uninspiring plot. The general outlook makes this movie way inferior than other recognizable musical dramas like Moulin Rogue or Chicago.

    The songs are nevertheless ingenious but becomes instantly refreshing and entertaining only after a while. To be honest, the songs and dances are good in the first sighting, but becomes sort of routine and under-par. How many of you would remember how Moulin Rogue or Chicago's performances been way better than this one and definitely making Burlesque a mere deaf in the ears? Similar undertone of musical film like last year's Fame than a more sensational one like in Rent, Once or Dreamgirls. Some critics even pointed out the fact that the cinematography and the songs are pretty much campy and a carbon paper of somewhere else. Thus, this lead me to ask you a question, does Burlesque pretty memorable? For me, just a momentary one.

    Cher's performance is pretty dodgy while Christina Aguilera's acting feels rather plastic but slightly better than what I first thought. I also think that Stanley Tucci, Alan Cumming and the rest of the supporting casts are underused. Look at Stanley Tucci's performance as Sean; pretty limited but manages to execute perfectly when time comes.

    While the exact meaning of burlesque is a literary, dramatic or musical work intended to cause laughter by caricaturing the manner or spirit of serious works, or by ludicrous treatment of their subjects; the movie fails to live up to the expectation for been the musical of the year, rather free fall itself into becoming just another campy movie with less inspiring dialogue and somewhat momentary memorable performances that are unable to create it's own watermark.


    Story: 2.0
    Casts: 3.0
    Cinematography: 4.0
    Effects: 3.0
    GREEN-TEA-O-METER: 10.6/20.0
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