Burlesque is a 2010 American backstage musical film written and directed by Steven Antin and starring Cher and Christina Aguilera along with Eric Dane, Cam Gigandet, Julianne Hough, Alan Cumming, Peter Gallagher, Kristen Bell and Stanley Tucci. The film was released on November 24, 2010 in North America.
Cher and Aguilera contributed to the soundtrack album, with Aguilera contributing eight out of the 10 songs and Cher taking the remaining two. The album was released in the USA on November 22, 2010 and received two nominations at the 54th Grammy Awards. The song “You Haven’t Seen the Last of Me”, penned by Diane Warren and sung by Cher, won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song in 2011, while the film was nominated for the Golden Globe Award in the Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy category. The film has grossed about $90 million worldwide.
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Ali Rose (Christina Aguilera), whose mother passed when she was seven, quits her bar job when her boss refuses to pay her and moves to Los Angeles. There she auditions unsuccessfully. One night, she hears music coming from a burlesque club, where Tess (Cher) and the dancers perform “Welcome to Burlesque”. She meets a songwriter, Jack (Cam Gigandet), at the club’s bar. He refers her to Tess for an audition, but she is instantly rejected and ushered out by Sean (Stanley Tucci). Ali gets a job as a waitress at the club.
When Georgia (Julianne Hough) becomes pregnant, auditions are held to replace her. Ali performs “Wagon Wheel Watusi” and persuades Tess to hire her as one of the club’s dancers, much to the annoyance of Nikki (Kristen Bell), the lead performer and a drunk. One day Ali replaces Nikki on stage when Nikki is too drunk to perform. Nikki tries to sabotage the performance by turning off the music that the dancers usually lip sync to, but Ali impresses everyone with her singing skills. Tess makes Ali the main star of a new show at the club. It becomes increasingly popular, and Ali gains stardom while Nikki fumes in the background. Despite the club’s growing success, Tess is unable to pay the bank the money she owes.
One night after the club closes, Tess, worried about the money, sings “You Haven’t Seen the Last of Me”. Nikki shows up drunk and jealous. She accuses Tess of rejecting their long friendship for Ali. Tess defends Ali and questions Nikki’s gratitude for the help she has received from her during her many drunken binges. Angered, Nikki quits and falsely claims that she slept with Vince (Peter Gallagher) after his and Tess’s honeymoon. Tess angrily retaliates by smashing the passenger side window on Nikki’s convertible with a crowbar.
Meanwhile, Ali and Jack become romantically attracted to each other. However, Jack is engaged to Natalie (Dianna Agron), an actress working in New York City. Sean encourages Jack to end the engagement, as Ali is a better person than his shallow fiancée. Marcus (Eric Dane) is growing infatuated with Ali, who spends time with him, making Jack jealous. At Georgia’s wedding, Jack appears to call off his engagement and becomes drunk. That night, Ali and Jack sleep together, but the next morning Natalie unexpectedly returns from New York and finds the two in bed together. She angrily insists she and Jack never broke up. Jack denies this but asks Ali to leave. Feeling heartbroken and betrayed, Ali runs to Sean for support, and learns that Sean is gay. Marcus calls Ali, and Sean prompts her to go out with Marcus.
Ali learns that Marcus is interested in the “air rights” above the club; he hopes to build a skyscraper on the property. Ali breaks things off with Marcus, who asks why this makes him “the bad guy”. Ali replies, “It just makes you the wrong guy”. Ali tells Tess about Marcus’s plan, and they inform the owner (James Brolin) of new million-dollar condos being sold across the street. Fearing the obstruction of his prospective purchasers’ view, he buys the air rights to the club’s property from Tess. She uses the money to buy out Vince’s share (they are divorced, and he wanted out of the club), pay off the bank, and redecorate the club in her own vision. Nikki admits that she lied about sleeping with Vince out of anger, and Tess rehires her at the club.
Ali reunites with Jack after he tells her it’s over with Natalie for good, as Natalie cared more about her job than her relationship with Jack. Having earned Nikki’s respect, Ali performs “Show Me How You Burlesque”, written by Jack, with all of the dancers on stage, delighting the crowd.
Burlesque Backing Tracks
- A Guy What Takes His Time
- Bound To You
- I Am A Good Girl
- I Get What I Want
- Show Me How To Burlesque
- Something Got A Hold On Me
- Welcome to Burlesque
- You Haven’t Seen The Last Of Me