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I'm glad I didn't turn this off 20 minutes in, thinking that it was basically what I'd heard and expected. Despite all the early embarrassing missteps and clunky lines delivered by Ms Berkeley, the film actually grew into an experience that I didn't want to turn off. It's ten times as good as Striptease.
It's not Citizen Kane, but it's not a soft-core porn version of Rock Star (awful film) either. Most of the characters were well-developed and believable, even it the situations were not. And there's plenty of humor, the vast majority of it intentional.
I'm wondering if most of the heavy derision of the film comes from Puritanical attitudes, rather than from an honest evaluation. If unromanticized sex and heavy nudity -- literally, in the case of one character -- make you (or your viewing companions) uncomfortable, Showgirls probably not for you.
I enjoyed it and would watch it again.
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