6 Less-Lousy Alternatives to Cher and Aguilera's Lousy "Burlesque"

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Poor Christina Aguilera.  Poor Cher.  I'm sending them virtual hugs and bouquets of flowers and replacement false eyelashes today, because their new movie Burlesque stinks. 
I was really rooting for them, too. Who doesn't want a reason to see Cher soar?  At a gorgeous 64-years old she's an iconic force of entertainment brilliance, but she hasn't played a meaningful film roll since 1999's Tea with Mussolini.  (I'm not counting Stuck on You. I did adore her appearances on Will & Grace, though, so they count.)
Christina Aguilera's Burlesque performance was the highlight of this month's American Movie Awards broadcast. Her son is almost three, and she looks triumphantly strong and gorgeous following the stresses of a a tabloid-covered divorce this year. So I was more than rooting for her to succeed in her first starring film role.
Almost as importantly, it's exciting to see films that focus on women's lives.  Burlesque tells the story of a small-town girl who goes from waitress rags to starring riches in Cher's L.A. burlesque resurgence club.  Great stars, glamorous backdrop, opulent score. What's not to love, right?
Well, it's lousy.  The script is trite and cliched.  The acting tanks. Such a shame! See for yourself:

Maybe it will play better on the small screen as a DVD, but for now I suggest avoiding Burlesque and making the following substitutions:
1.  Need a Cher fix?  Your are much better off streaming Moonstruck or the Farewell Tour from Netflix. Feel free to perform a personal drag or lingerie-clad version of "Believe" singing all of the autotune parts yourself. Everyone else does.
2. See Christina at her best.  Forget Burlesque.  Go for Live in the U.K. or Back to Basics. 
3. Really, really need to watch a pop star in a musical?  Madonna's Evita is the way to go.  All through her wild days, her mad existence... she kept her promise, don't keep your distance.
4.  Can do without the pop singer, but feel stoked about watching women in an ass-kicking musical?  Line up Chicago and Moulin Rouge, and then cap your marathon with the best: Liza in Cabaret.  You deserve the best.
5.  Need the inspiration of a success-in-show business musical without the cliches?  A Star is Born. Of course. Or how about one of my personal favorites, the stunning Edith Piaf biopic La Vie en Rose?
6. Just want popcorn and a dark room far, far away from your laundry pile?  Fine, fine, go ahead and see Burlesque. If it hits the mark for you, let me know.  Better yet, save your popcorn money and hold on for just a few days.  December's film line-up is full of promise, including Johnny Depp, Nicole Kidman, Helen Mirren, Tron, Coen Brothers, Javier Bardem, and even other climbing-to-stardom offerings in The Fighter and Country Strong. To name only a few.
With so many other great options competing for my entertainment ticket, I really wish I had the minutes I spent at Burlesque back.  Something tells me poor Cher and Christina do, too.
Contributing Deb Rox blogs at Deb on the Rocks and tries to avoid reading movie spoilers on Twitter.  She does like a little butter on her popcorn, please, and might even have a contraband baggie of nutritional yeast in her pocket.  Hippie corn FTW.


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