Some are already looking at the new trailer for the Christina Aguilera, Cher team-up Burlesque and reacting to the tune of “it’s Showgirls meets Chicago.” Cinematical’s Alison Nastasi may have hit the nail on the head with this comment: “more like Showgirls lite — Oprah approved,” pointing out the film’s need to dance through PG-13 territory. The film is a stock tale of a small-town girl (Aguilera) heading for the big city trying to make it big. She authoritatively buys herself a one-way ticket to the big city (in this case, Los Angeles) and starts working on her dream of becoming a burlesque dancer, with Cher as her reluctant guide.

As a fan of burlesque shows, I was intrigued. As a fan of watchable movies, I was left with a feeling of wanting — wanting for Cinemax late night programming, or something of the like. More after the jump.

As we’d expect, there is something wild and flamboyant about the musical numbers glimpsed in this first trailer. But it’s the non-showy stuff that is a big turn off. Stale delivery and a bland story are things that we should be able to pick up from a simple trailer. But they are evident here. Burlesque‘s opening shot of marketing gives it all away, the good and the bad. And unfortunately, it’s mostly bad. See for yourself below.


Ali (Christina Aguilera) is a small-town girl with a big voice who escapes hardship and an uncertain future to follow her dreams to LA. After stumbling upon The Burlesque Lounge, a majestic but ailing theater 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 builds a friendship with a featured dancer (Julianne Hough), finds an enemy in a troubled, jealous performer (Kristen Bell), and garners the affection of Jack (Cam Gigandet), a bartender and fellow musician. With the help of a sharp-witted stage manager (Stanley Tucci) and gender-bending host (Alan Cumming), Ali makes her way from the bar to the stage. Her spectacular voice restores The Burlesque Lounge to its former glory, though not before a charismatic entrepreneur (Eric Dane) arrives with an enticing proposal…

Burlesque arrives in theaters November 24, 2010.


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