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Moulin Rouge! (2001)
An underrated masterpiece
Moulin Rouge! is the best film I saw after many years, I haven't felt so excited over a film for a really long time. Baz Luhrmann managed to create such a unique and incomparable movie and he took a big risk: he created a fantastic world beyond the spectator's imagination. You feel like you're a part of the story, while the characters are likeable, (well, except for the Duke of course) and you find yourself rooting for Christian and Satine's, up until a point, secret love affair, with the hope that they'll get their chance for a happy ending. You get attached to the characters while there are quite a few humorous and pleasant scenes.
Nicole Kidman gives an exquisite and unforgettable performance in the role of the most famous Moulin Rouge courtesan, she shines and she gives her everything to the role: she sings, she dances, she cries, she even shows her comical side. Ewan McGregor is a true gem, you can't help but fall in love with him when he sings to Elton John's Your Song. He incarnates a challenging role and he has, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful voices I've ever heard. Both of the protagonists go beyond their limits, while their chemistry is surpassing and very believable.
The soundtrack is also a very strong part of the film, specifically Come What May and the chilling El Tango De Roxanne, both of them causing undescribable feelings to the viewer. As for El Tango De Roxanne, I never thought that a five-minute scene had the ability to be a true masterpiece. For me it's one of the best scenes in cinematic history as it goes from the tango, the rhythm, the infinite feelings it causes to the pain in Satine's sacrifice so she can turn her home into a better place. It makes you feel a hundred emotions all at once and you feel your heart racing, goosebumps and tears welling up your eyes as you feel for the heroine who has to pretend once again so she can make the Duke believe what he wants to believe.
The entire movie is a breath of fresh air between movies with similar scenarios and the director breaks ground with his innovative approach despite the difficulties during filming. It deserved the Oscars it got and it causes a rollercoaster of emotions to the viewer, it even makes you want to fall in love so deeply that you act like a complete fool and sing your heart out on top of an elephant. Lastly, apart from the spectacle and the beautiful, colourful costumes that steal the show, it offers many beautiful messages such as the fact that it's better to have love and loss than no love at all and that, as Christian greatly put it, "the greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return".