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Moulin Rouge


Satine (Kidman) is the star courtesan at the Moulin Rouge. She falls in love with a talented writer (Mcgregor) and stars in a play written by him but sponsored by a Duke, who's infatuated with her. The play delineates the true love story of a a play written by him but sponsored by a Duke, who's player and the duke represented by a Maharajah. When the Duke learns of their love story, he demands that Satine return to him. After much hue and cry, the film ends on a tame note, much like a Hindi film.

If you know of this film only because it features the 'Chamma Chamma' number by Nicole Kidman, then well, forget it. Simply because, the lady is nowhere to be seen when 30 seconds of the song are blared out.

And if you've heard of this film because its' a Baz Luhrmann production, then let us tell you that this is another attempt at a shocking, unconventional romance. Presented in the musical genre, Luhrmann uses contemporary Pop tunes by Madonna, The Beatles et al to create a mish-mash of grunge, techno and soul with alarming effect.

Luhrmann takes a Hindi film and sells it to western audiences. More fool us, for even making a brouhaha over it. He retains the Hindi pichchure formula, adds song-and-dance and churns out a melodrama. There is even the mandatory coughing and spitting blood scene. What's more, the film also states 'The End.' This is no great shakes for those of us brought up on a staple diet of Aby Baby flicks.

Nicole Kidman, at last gets to express herself rather than just look hot with a cold demeanour. She is terrific when she makes a fool of herself on screen, as part of the character. Ewan Mcgregor is rather likeable as the smitten writer, with his lost puppy look combined with his perpetually quizzical expression. Technically the film scores on editing and screenplay. It looks good. The set design is brilliant, with red, obviously dominating the scene.

In the end, what the film does convey is undiluted passion and mad rage and jealousy. Brilliant in parts, 'Moulin Rouge' is a heady mix of masala and mush! Watch it at your own risk, if you fancy white skin in a Bollywood-style potboiler. If not that, you might catch a few laughs!


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