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Burlesque (2010)



Average Rating: 4.8/10
Reviews Counted: 147
Fresh: 54 | Rotten: 93

Campy and clichéd, Burlesque wastes its talented cast (including a better-than-expected Christina Aguilera) on a movie that wavers uncertainly between "bad" and "so bad it's good."


Average Rating: 4.8/10
Critic Reviews: 34
Fresh: 10 | Rotten: 24

Campy and clichéd, Burlesque wastes its talented cast (including a better-than-expected Christina Aguilera) on a movie that wavers uncertainly between "bad" and "so bad it's good."



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Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 64,337

My Rating

Movie Info

Christina Aguilera makes her dramatic feature debut as Ali, a small-town singer who takes her shot at stardom performing at a neo-burlesque nightclub in Los Angeles. Situated in a regal old theater that's still dazzling despite having fallen into disrepair, The Burlesque Lounge is the kind of club where legends are born. When club owner Tess (Cher) hires charismatic Ali as a cocktail waitress, the ambitious big-city newcomer goes to great lengths to make a good impression. Taken under the wing


Drama, Romance, Musical & Performing Arts

Mar 1, 2011


Sony Pictures/Screen Gems - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (149) | Top Critics (35) | Fresh (54) | Rotten (93) | DVD (6)

Even the dances feel cozily dated, as choreographers Denise Faye and Joey Pizzi borrow liberally from Bob Fosse.

January 4, 2011 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader | Comments (3)
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Burlesque manages what seemed impossible: It is filled with half-naked dancing girls, yet it's still boring.

January 3, 2011 Full Review Source: Newsday | Comments (3)
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Try to make 'Showgirls' for 12 year olds and you please no one. What a tease.

December 15, 2010 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Has the glitz and allure of a Victoria's Secret ad. What it doesn't have is an imaginative reinvention of the show-biz clichés that have so adamantly inspired it.

December 6, 2010 Full Review Source: New Yorker | Comments (2)
New Yorker
Top Critic IconTop Critic

If you go to Burlesque expecting a campy hoot on the order of Showgirls, you may be in for a disappointment. It's not quite awful enough, although it's plenty bad.

December 3, 2010 Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor | Comments (2)
Christian Science Monitor
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Rated a family-friendly PG-13, Burlesque never loses its s---, never gets erotically out of hand, never devolves into delicious camp.

November 24, 2010 Full Review Source: Rolling Stone | Comment (1)
Rolling Stone
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's totally ridiculous, utterly unbelievable and deliciously naughty as much as a PG-13 movie can be.

October 14, 2013 Full Review Source: 7M Pictures
7M Pictures

What Antin should take away from this experience is that it takes a lot more than a clichéd-filled story, some dancing, forgettable music, and a bland script to make an interesting and engaging musical.

September 22, 2012 Full Review Source:

...wears out its welcome to an almost astonishing degree...

April 15, 2011 Full Review Source: Reel Film Reviews
Reel Film Reviews

Welcome back, plotline of 1933; you haven't aged a bit.

April 4, 2011 Full Review Source:

The alarmingly plastic surgery-ified Cher, with her face looking like a condom stretched over a beach umbrella, gives a performance here as the club owner that's not so much 'still' as 'immobile'.

March 17, 2011 Full Review Source: | Comments (2)

This is all about the music and director/writer Steve Antin has fashioned a spectacle worthy of Broadway.

February 6, 2011 Full Review Source:

Burlesque may be aiming for Cabaret-style glamour, but mostly it plays like stale cheese.

January 14, 2011 Full Review Source: MovieTime, ABC Radio National
MovieTime, ABC Radio National

The tone is earnest, verging on sentimental. Or maybe it's just the effect of Antin's leaden dialogue, for it inspires some execrable acting. As a movie star, Aguilera is yet to shine.

January 14, 2011 Full Review Source: Sydney Morning Herald
Sydney Morning Herald

So bad it's good or just plain bad? Terribly entertaining with emphasis on the terribly, or just, you know, terrible?

January 14, 2011 Full Review Source: Herald Sun (Australia) | Comment (1)
Herald Sun (Australia)

Burlesque is unlikely to convert any new followers to either its stars or its subject matter.

January 13, 2011 Full Review Source:

The images are murky and off-putting, the wisecracks fall flat, and the musical numbers aren't stylish or excessive enough to be memorable.

January 13, 2011 Full Review Source: The Age (Australia)
The Age (Australia)

Yes, Burlesque is bad, but it's the good kind of bad, with plenty of unintentional laughs and a powerfully dreadful lead performance by Cher.

January 12, 2011 Full Review Source: The Age (Australia) | Comments (2)
The Age (Australia)

Burlesque offers such an archetypal Hollywood narrative that explaining what happens in the film is almost irrelevant.

January 10, 2011 Full Review Source: The Vine
The Vine

Burlesque is awful. The script is horrendous. The acting is dismal. The musical numbers are glitzy and glittery, but even all the half-naked women on stage can't make this film particularly thrilling.

January 10, 2011 Full Review Source: Trespass | Comment (1)

While campy and clichéd, this is a surprisingly enjoyable piece of escapism with Christina Aguilera delivering an impressive turn in the lead role.

January 10, 2011 Full Review Source: FILMINK (Australia) | Comments (2)
FILMINK (Australia)

Yes, it bears absolutely no resemblance to the historical art of burlesque, but that's like complaining Jurassic Park didn't have enough palaeontology in it.

January 5, 2011 Full Review Source: Film4 | Comment (1)

[Steve] Antin hasn't really written Burlesque, he has merely spooned the story out of a can labelled 'Instant Musical: Just add eyeliner.'

December 28, 2010 Full Review Source: Moviedex | Comment (1)

Elevator music

December 23, 2010 Full Review Source: CinePassion | Comments (3)

Audience Reviews for Burlesque

Not really to my tastes, didn't quite realise it would be a musical (believe it or not!). I realised Christina would sing, but not quite so much!
It was okay, if you like musicals. Christina Aguilera is very pretty to look at and has great voice, but it gets a bit much. Story is slight. Waitress gets dream job in Burlesque bar and gets guy.. seen it all before and done better in Coyote Ugly (not Burlesque, I realise, but a similar type of story).
Cher pretty just wanted her to shut up. Could that woman look any more plastic? (sorry, really not a fan!). Kristen Bell not really in it enough .
Not that bad. Average. If you like musicals, will probably enjoy it, but I was disappointed.
March 2, 2014

Super Reviewer

28/07/2011 (DVD)

CAN'T BELIEVE I LIKED IT!!? Yes I thought I was going to loathe it because it looks so chickity flickity but I sat through it quite enjoying it. It didn't quite suck as I expected it to.

No bars raised in the plot department but what it had was done nicely and for me was not a bore. A "from rags to riches" story that is no biggie really since we've seen it so many times but otherwise still a sittable flick.

Music was good for me although its not my thing but it fitted the whole movie thing so it was appreciable to accept in my case. Another flick to kick back to on an ordinary day.
February 17, 2013

Super Reviewer

WOW this was predictable fluff, if your thinking along the lines of 'Moulin Rouge' and 'Chicago' your not far wrong, basically with the same plot from 'Showgirls' and errr well its basically 'Showgirls' but Burlesque.

Its not a bad film but its just very very average with very little on offer for catchy memorable tunes/songs, all the usual cliched characters and predictable events during the film and very little acting talent on show to boot. The appearance of the film is lovely with a real glitzy, razzle dazzle 'Cabaret' look and feel, the dancers are all superb and look stunning but Aguilera is poor as the lead. Looks the part but just can't act (much like Kidman in 'Moulin Rouge'). Cher is actually not a bad choice for the club owner as she looks the part of an aging dancer refusing to let herself grow old gracefully, suits her plastic looks perfectly. Gallagher looks and plays almost the same character/role as Maclachlan in 'Showgirls' whilst Tucci is the cliched gay close friend and assistant to Cher.

To be honest I was amazed Madonna and Lady Gaga weren't involved, would of fit in nicely. Main issue is lack of acting and dancing talent with the use of boring huge star names that take all charm and realism out of the whole idea....the very unoriginal dull idea.

Its a nice try but its too in your face and not believable, hard to nail down but it just doesn't work. Too many tried plot ideas and maybe the club was too extravagant and big? maybe it should of been more lowkey, a slightly more humble realistic approach?.

Of course its a broadway theatrical type homage or recreation so I can understand the grandioso production and approach. But as I said its a little too similar to other film/theatrical productions (a bit late in the day and jumping on the musical bandwagon perhaps?) and simply isn't as good.
I think a more sensible, down to earth look may have worked better as this is just too campy and cliched, a Fosse/Minnelli beater this certainly is not ;)
June 16, 2012

Super Reviewer

A fairly average film that doesn't offer much more than the typical tried and tested, girl on hard times manages to find an outlet for her talent and comes good scenario. Some good performances by Christina, the soundtrack to the film is good to. However the film feels a good 20mins too long at least.
May 4, 2012

Super Reviewer

    1. Ali: Where have I been all my life?
    – Submitted by Sol P (17 months ago)
    1. Nikki: Didn't your mama ever teach you it's not polite to stare?
    2. Ali: You're just so damn beautiful, I-...
    3. Nikki: Well in that case; screw your mama, and stare away.
    4. Ali: No one would ever know.
    5. Nikki: Know what?
    6. Ali: That you're a dude.
    – Submitted by Jennifer B (17 months ago)
    1. Ali: You know what I'd love to hear?
    2. Tess: What?
    3. Ali: A big fat thank you!
    4. Ali: *leaves*
    5. Tess: *whispers-Thank you!*
    – Submitted by Breunne D (2 years ago)
    1. Sean: What is Ali short for?
    2. Ali: Alice.
    3. Sean: Alice? Well, welcome to wonderland.
    – Submitted by Violaine E (2 years ago)
    1. Georgia: *clapping*
    2. Nikki: What are you so excited about? She's YOUR replacement.
    – Submitted by Violaine E (2 years ago)
    1. Sean: Well I couldn't keep my eyes off of her.
    2. Tess: Try harder...
    – Submitted by Violaine E (2 years ago)
View all quotes (12)

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