Burlesque opens today – is it all just great costumes and singing and a weak plot?

Filed in Gather Entertainment News Channel by on November 24, 2010 0 Comments

Burlesque has  everything going for it — a  huge budget of $55 million, plus stars Cher and Christina Aguilera.

But with this being the most expensive movie in the history of production company Screen Gems, according to  Wapedia –  the movie Burlesque has a lot riding on its popular and critical success.

This is Cher’s first musical role and her first starring role since the 2003 ‘Stuck on You’.

And this is Christina Aguilera’s movie and musical theater debut. The soundtrack was released earlier this week. Christina sings eight out of the ten songs and Cher sings the remaining two.

Christina Aguilera’s early start as a Disney Mouseketeer parallels Britney Spears’ and Justin Timberlake’s in the 90s.

But Christina’s sheer vocal quality, her incredible range and her powerful pipes far outstretch anything Britney or Justin can offer.

The story in Burlesque is that Ali Rose, (Christina Aguilera), is a small-town girl with dreams of making it big in L. A., and she just happens to fall into the Burlesque lounge, an old style theater with big dreams and financial problems.

The show’s headliner and owner is none other than Tess (Cher), who hires Ali as a cocktail waitress at the club.

Ali proudly announces she will one day perform in the club, but nothing in film or life is that easy. Tess needs proof that Ali has the goods to make it in this business.


Burlesque Theatrical Poster, fair use


Ali quickly becomes friends with Georgia (Julianne Hough) and just as quickly becomes hissing enemies with Nikki (Kristin Bell).

Enemies stand in the way of Ali’s dream, but in a surprise break, she gets on stage and sings.  Her superb voice brings the Burlesque lounge back to its golden days — but not without strings.

The story line seems fine enough and the costumes are lavish, but critics have a lot of reservations about this, and one is calling it earnestly ersatz.

So this writer will gladly see this production, but her hopes are dampened. Let’s see if this movie can surprise this writer.

It was written by Steve Antin, (his sister started The Pussy Cat Dolls) who rewrote Diablo Cody’s original script.

Cher looks fabulous for a 64-year old woman, and indeed — she looks about half that age, but Christina is only 30. And she’s in her prime.

It is no coincidence that Christina, like her character Ali, was known as a ‘little girl with a big voice.’

Christina got her start at age 10 on Star Search, then landed the role with Disney.


Review of the movie opener on this page later today. Here’s the trailer for you to watch.

What do you think? Do you think Christina Aguilera is poised to take over Cher?

Why else would she be singing eight of the soundtrack songs and Cher only two?



© 2010 Kathryn Esplin.

About the Author ()

An article of mine, 'On Marriage, Life, Death and Remarriage' was published in "Blended Families (Social Issues Firsthand) by Greenhouse Press." An article of mine was referenced in this book: "Margaret Atwood: a reference guide" by Judith McComb

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