Moulin Rouge is every clichéd love story. A penniless writer (Ewan McGregor) falls in love with the beautiful lead courtesan (Nicole Kidman), who tried so hard not to reciprocate these feelings; but in the end realises it’s true love. Oh and it’s set in Paris. And they express themselves through song. As a film concept, it sounds cheesy and unoriginal; but it’s anything but that.
Baz Luhrmann makes this crazy idea work. His use of music and colour is beautiful (it’s no surprise that the film won the Oscars for best art direction and best costume design). With the film being set in 1899, you’d think the use of more modern songs like ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ and ‘Material Girl’ would feel out of place; but when you watch it you couldn’t think of more perfect songs to fit the plot. Music is arguably the key ingredient in the film, with original takes on classic songs, as well as great original tracks (like ballad Come What May), it couldn’t really get any better. And although it may leave you in tears, the film is a delight. A definite feel good film for christmas.
Moulin Rouge (2001), directed by Baz Luhrmann, is released on blu-ray disc and DVD in the UK by Twentieth Century Fox, Certificate 12.