Pound Sign

New York City, pop culture, art and nightlife. Because nobody else is blogging about those things.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

"Bland, pretty and sexless, just like the movie"

Make no mistake, the new movie Burlesque, starring Cher and Christina Aquilera, that opens this weekend, is not burlesque. It's not actually about burlesque. It's Coyote Ugly 2.

It's nice to have actual burlesque and how this movie is not it mentioned in Manohla Dargis's negative review of the movie in today's New York Times. The fact is, it's not JUST about the fact that the movie doesn't include striptease, it's about the fact that it doesn't include any of the elements that make contemporary burlesque interesting or unique, it's just another collection of the same "country girl becomes a star, learns life lessons in the city" backstage musical cliches, that as Dargis notes, go back to the birth of talkies. it actually makes me think of another recent flick that gave a glossy Hollywood makeover to another grassroots, woman-driven and empowering movement: Whip It. That movie wasn't a classic but it did capture a sense of the actual values embodied by roller derby. Burlesque, the movie, just took a cultural buzzword and used it as a title.

So, anyway, F that shit. Come to a REAL burlesque show this weekend! Boy, there are gonna be some surprised people who are introduced to "burlesque" by this movie and decide to check out a real show in their local scene...that's not a bad thing, plenty of them might become new fans of the real deal. But it's funny.

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