Dave White
Burlesque Review

Dave's Rating:


A musical about real estate. Seriously.

Who's In It: Christina Aguilera, Cher, Eric Dane, Stanley Tucci, Cam Gigandet, Kristen Bell, Julianne Hough, Peter Gallagher

The Basics: Small-town girl Christina Aguilera goes to Los Angeles and gets a job as a cocktail waitress in Cher's burlesque nightclub. But what C-Ag really wants is to be up on that stage in a bustier, busting out air-siren-like songs. When the star is fired and tries to sabotage the show, our heroine shows everyone what she can do. Meanwhile, a land developer wants to pay Cher tons of money for the club so he can build a high-rise on top of everybody's dead hopes of stardom. Will she raise the cash to save her place before time runs out? Welcome back, plotline of 1933; you haven't aged a bit.

What's The Deal: Not good enough or moving enough or musically engaging enough to be memorable and not hilariously horrible enough a piece of failed art to qualify as actual camp, this movie falls right down into the worst sinkhole of all, the middling pit of mediocrity and memory failure. Blame it on Steve Antin's trite script, his direction that values "shiny" over everything else, zero forward momentum or suspense over the characters' fate, all the bohemian qualities of the average MBA--no lie, this is a movie where the plot hinges on people understanding how to exploit real estate "air rights" for their own benefit--and, most sad of all, poor Cher's inability to move any part of her face that isn't the mouth. If you're hoping for Showgirls or Glitter, you're going to have to settle for The Hannah Montana Movie.

Even When It's Working It's Not Working: You can't pin much of this failure on Christina Aguilera. In her non-singing moments she can walk and talk at the same time. She's perfectly competent (even as she comes off as more than a little entitled). So the rest of it is pretty much a showcase for her booming vocals. That's the only time the movie comes alive, when it's worshiping her. But that's also where it hits another roadblock. She's not a singer who inspires love. And she's so technically skilled at the kind of million-notes-in-one-syllable style that it's beyond the average person's ability to sing along with her. Your job is to sit still and watch and be super-impressed by her. And that's fine. Just kind of chilly.

Old-School Cher Worshipers, Beware: She may be top-billed but it's not her story. She disappears for long chunks of time and the camera doesn't know how to deal with the cosmetic adjustments she's rewarded herself with over the years. There are moments when she appears to be digital. And face work or no face work, she's cooler than that and deserves better.

But How Are The Songs? Great if you like songs that are all about what it means to be "burlesque." At least three of them, if not more (I tuned out after the third one, honestly.) They welcome you to burlesque, they explain how cool it is to be at the burlesque, they remind you that burlesque is where all your dreams come true, they warn you that there is no smoking inside burlesque, and on and on like that.


Comments (24)

Michelle - 11-24-2010 9:37 AM
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Hey Dave, I miss the times when you would give movies a letter grade. I dont care for the star system.

rick kreher - 11-24-2010 10:32 PM
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Oh man I LOVED this movie. Loved Cher, Loved C-Ag. Dave, you are too old and crochety to be doing this. How many people aren't going to see it because your hemmorhoids were flaring up? You are costing people money Mr Dave. The movie cost millions of dollars, thousands of people involved, and Dave gets to determine if it is any good. Go back to watching teenage movies, Dave, and telling sophomores how cool you are.

L J - 11-25-2010 2:32 PM
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Great movie really enjoyed the music, singing, and dancing. I would see it again!!!

spike - 11-25-2010 8:54 PM
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RICK - if you'd like someone to pat you on the head and reward your opinions, perhaps you can ask a therapist. However, at 200 bucks an hour, it's considerably more expensive than a movie.....in other words, STFU.

Pam - 11-26-2010 11:44 AM
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Sorry, Dave, but you missed the mark on this one. ABSOLUTELY LOVED THIS MOVIE AND PLAN TO SEE IT AGAIN. Movie fans...this movie has great music and dancing and of course, CHER. Go see it, it will lift your spirits and make you wish you could be dancing on the stage with Christina A.

normal - 11-27-2010 12:03 PM
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Again , dispite reality, the divients in the crowd want to support the liberal matriach. Cher does deserve better, be a real mom, take care of your daughter. Be the headliner on this. Christina has an excellent instrument and also deserves better. Is this the best we can do? Seriously?

Ken - 11-27-2010 3:51 PM
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Well "Dave" you clearly are a douche and you were totally not paying attention to the movie. The acting might have not been the best at times throughout the movie; however, C-Ag rocked it, the cast was great and soundtrack is phenomenal. Good time hands down!. Maybe you should stick to watching Lifetime movies!.

LIttleLeaf - 11-27-2010 6:12 PM
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Somehow I can't see this guy going to a Cher/Christina movie...unless there's a feminine side to him...the movie was no Chicago, but the effort and glamour was there and it made me wanna dance.

Ann - 11-28-2010 7:54 AM
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No question, the acting was trite, the script was trite...but from one who has been in real estate a while, we need a musical about real estate! The music and musicians were great. It is a happy movie, no surprises, just like the old Bing Crosby movie, White Christmas...they were saving something with song and dance too! I enjoyed Burlesque very much!

Lois - 11-29-2010 1:43 AM
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I loved the movie.everyone with me also enjoyed it. Don't know what the critics problem is.

maximillian - 11-29-2010 11:57 AM
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I was super excited to see it and left having to force myself to actaully say I liked it. I guess I wanted to like it so bad and was a little let down. Was it the worst movie I've ever seen, no way but I would wait for the rental on this one, sorry guys....

Anna - 11-29-2010 7:39 PM
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This review is SPOT ON. The movie isn't the worst, it's far from the best, it's just downright mediocre. If it weren't for the musical numbers it would be horrendous, and unfortunately that's not enough to carry a film. "C-Ag" does come across as entitled and Cher isn't in the film nearly enough for all the billing she's getting. The plot is boring, the acting is awful, and the dialogue is beyond cheesy. There, you Christina lovers can bash me and leave the poor reviewer alone. He's doing his job, and like I said, I AGREE 100%.

chuck - 11-29-2010 10:06 PM
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I completely disagree with the critics statements and those of you whom seem to think that a good movies is lost in this one. It's the classic coming-of-age story portrayed as a fish out of water with extreme hidden talents and the ability to face adversity and overcome, yes they threw a little extra in with this one as we as an audience learn of two (main) characters backgrounds, the girl and the club, as this story wouldn't exist if the club were a mere backdrop as so many musicals are. Cher was stunning and still has everything she's ever had.. The story wasn't only entertaining, it was liberating, and exhilarating, for anyone who's not always fit in, and those "late bloomers".

Sabrina - 11-30-2010 3:13 AM
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Wow, I can't believe Aguilera has committed fans who are incensed by this [spot on] review. I mean, that's so late '90s/early 2000s.

daniel prates - 11-30-2010 7:27 PM
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if CABARET had a younger sis w deep down syndrome tht wld b BURLESQUE

Elle - 12-01-2010 3:33 AM
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Whats up with critics and C-Ag? They are all against her. Dont they ever think that they are costing people money? Cher and Christina deserves much credit for their efforts. Atleast this review is about the movie unlike the one i read last night which was about Christinas personality. I love this movie because it is a great musical <3

Elle - 12-01-2010 3:34 AM
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Whats up with critics and C-Ag? They are all against her. Dont they ever think that they are costing people money? Cher and Christina deserves much credit for their efforts. Atleast this review is about the movie unlike the one i read last night which was about Christinas personality. I love this movie because it is a great musical <3

candy - 12-01-2010 10:22 AM
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OMG!!!! I loved this movie..One of the best I have seen in a long time!!!

Kim - 12-03-2010 8:12 AM
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Wow I'm surprised Dave doesn't like this movie. I would think most gay men would. Perhaps he is just looking for another brokeback mountain love affair about criminals. Don't listen to this freak. It's a great movie. You feel like your in the club and feel very uplifted thoughout the show!! I give it *****. Way to go Cher! You still Got It Baby!!

Bea - 12-05-2010 12:23 PM
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I loved the movie, the music was excellent, the story was great, and Cher was genuine and perfect in her part. As soon as I left the theatre, I went to the music store and bought the sound track. I have been listening to that everyday, music really gets you moving and makes you feel good. Also going to see it again Sunday.

sarah - 12-08-2010 1:57 PM
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Might I add that despite the title of this movie, the choreography and dance styles were more mtv dance club meets vegas than true to the original art form of burlesque, which is baudy, with performers that lure, taunt, and tease the audience with a seductive "I'm not going to show you everything" appeal (who are often voluptuous and multi-talented) rather than "watch me shake my ass like I'm the next Victoria's secret model who didn't get picked for Dancing with the Stars."

Jennifer - 1-07-2011 11:07 AM
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I enjoyed this movie seen it three times. I am going to purchase this movie when it comes out. Did you ever thing you didn't like this movie because it's just not your kinda movie? It was up beat had a good story line. You where probably the kinda person who said nine was awesome. That was a horrible movie and I waited to see that one. Burlesque is a great movie.

Gilbert Montalvo - 3-13-2011 12:14 AM
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WORST MOVIE EVER! I cant believe some people said it was good! They dont know ANYTHING about movies......

Erin - 8-09-2011 3:40 PM
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I thought this movie was fun, it was never going to win an oscar but sometimes its nice to just have mindless moments.

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