Q: What is the single worst movie that ever thought it was the biggest stuff around? A: Read this review to learn. Don't take me as just a guy who hates romantic movies and finds them lame. There are plenty of great romances that went along lines similar to this. And looking at the trailer, it seems deserving of such praise. The film looked amazing, had a visual style like nothing else, and was going to rejuvenate the dying film musical through originality and good story telling. After all, there's no way in hell the director got all this money and all this brilliant design and put in the worst story you could imagine. Right? I had too much faith in people. Moulin Rouge is so contrived, so lame, so up-its-own-a**, and so insultingly unoriginal, it really does make Titanic look like Casablanca. I thought I would love it, but this ended up being truly one of the most unpleasant times I've ever had in a movie theater. Maybe bashing Titanic is unfair, because at least that movie had an actual crisis to weigh in on weaker drama. Moulin Rouge has nothing but conviction in a story that deserves none. Every cliche you could imagine is thrown in: The artist who wants to write about love but has never been in love, the hooker with the heart of gold who wants more out of life, a conniving villain with no personality other than keeping the couple apart, and the most contrived misunderstandings to ever insult the audience. The part of the movie that I hated the most was how the villain (who is so one dimensional he isn't even given a name, and is simply referred to as 'The Duke') wants to have Ewan McGregor killed, and Nicole Kidman's character doesn't think to tell him that his life is in danger, but simply says they can't see each other. It is a scene so forced and contrived, and it is put in just so the couple can get back together and sing a terrible song. The characters are written horribly, the story is absolute crap, and the movie seems to think it's profound. And, on top of that, you'd that that amazing visual flare would save it. It would if the director knew how to hold a camera. The film is shot poorly, and edited so quickly that it is impossible to see any of the sets or costumes, and induces more migraines than a Japanese anime. I've heard many, many people defend this movie. They are people I respect, and, believe it or not, I can respect them for enjoying it. Their main defense is that Moulin Rouge is a deconstructionist piece of work, that serves to celebrate corny and contrived things by highlighting their importance to romantic stories. I can completely get behind that. I love it when people take something that snobs look down upon and defend it in art. Here's the problem with that defense though: Moulin Rouge never bothers to explain WHY any of this stuff is worth celebrating. What's so great about these cliches and corny plots? What is, indeed, wrong with filling the world with silly love songs? They drone on and on and on and on about love but they have no clue what the hell it is. They never talk about why they should celebrate or why it's important or why it's worth seeing about or even what it is. They just talk about how it's the greatest thing ever and nothing about it can ever be wrong. NOT. GOOD. ENOUGH.