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Moulin Rouge! (2001)

PG-13 | | Drama, Musical, Romance | 1 June 2001 (USA)
A poet falls for a beautiful courtesan whom a jealous duke covets.

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Won 2 Oscars. Another 83 wins & 130 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Garry McDonald ...
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The Unconscious Argentinean
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Kerry Walker ...
Caroline O'Connor ...
Christine Anu ...
Arabia
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Môme Fromage
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Audrey
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Storyline

The year is 1899, and Christian, a young English writer, has come to Paris to follow the Bohemian revolution taking hold of the city's drug and prostitute infested underworld. And nowhere is the thrill of the underworld more alive than at the Moulin Rouge, a night club where the rich and poor men alike come to be entertained by the dancers, but things take a wicked turn for Christian as he starts a deadly love affair with the star courtesan of the club, Satine. But her affections are also coveted by the club's patron: the Duke. A dangerous love triangle ensues as Satine and Christian attempt to fight all odds to stay together but a force that not even love can conquer is taking its toll on Satine... Written by O.G.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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This Story Is About Truth See more »

Genres:

Drama | Musical | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

1 June 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Moulin Rouge  »

Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$167,540 (USA) (18 May 2001)

Gross:

$57,386,369 (USA) (19 April 2002)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The can-can dancers and courtesans at the Moulin Rouge are known as "Diamond Dogs." Diamond Dogs was also the name of David Bowie's eighth studio album which he released in 1974. See more »

Goofs

During "Roxanne" when the men are spinning around Nini, she changes from dancing alone to being spun around by another man and back. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Toulouse-Lautrec: [singing] There was a boy, a very strange enchanted boy...
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Crazy Credits

The orchestra conductor conducts the 20th Century Fox music before the actual movie begins. See more »

Connections

References The Band Wagon (1953) See more »

Soundtracks

Complainte De La Butte
Music by Georges Van Parys
Lyrics by Jean Renoir
Performed by Rufus Wainwright
Produced by Michel Pepin and Rufus Wainwright
Rufus Wainwright performs courtesy of Dreamworks Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A stunning, visual feast
12 June 2001 | by See all my reviews

At the risk of sounding overly bombastic, "Moulin Rouge" is the best film I've seen all year, perhaps the best one I've seen in over a year. It is operatic in the best sense of the word, being at once massively outlandish and deeply personal. It is clear that a lot of people took career risks in choosing this film, and although "Moulin Rouge" may not rack up a huge box office, I think this film will become a classic alongside his other two films "Strictly Ballroom" and "Romeo + Juliet."

In the showing of "Moulin Rouge" I saw last week, at least 5 people walked out. At the same time I heard audience members audibly gasping at the films visuals and talking back to the screen. The source of these strong reactions? Baz Luhrmann's confidence in his garish cinematic vision and the commitment his actors have in him. The cast fills their roles with relish, even when the entire scene totters on the edge of overkill--but oddly enough, it is the focus that sets "Moulin Rouge" apart from other films these days. Whereas some actors sleepwalk through their roles as they collect their paychecks, everything about "Moulin Rouge" is done in earnest.

This movie is the anti-"Pearl Harbor," because instead of being a hodgepodge of market-tested ideas, "Moulin Rouge" presents a bold vision and dares the audience to accept or reject it. I, for one, accepted it with delight. A telling comparison: Luhrmann has Nicole Kidman and Ewen MacGregor sing the film's love song. Very daring. For "Pearl Harbor" Michael Bay chose Faith Hill. Very safe. Too safe. Can you imagine Ben Afleck belting out "There You'll Be"?

"Moulin Rouge" glitters with such bold decisions. It is a sumptuous feast for ear and eye featuring gorgeous costumes, intricate sets (Nicole Kidman's boudoir in a gigantic elephant is a case in point), and outlandishly choreographed dance numbers are paraded with frenetic relish. And the music, the MUSIC! As you probably know by now, Luhrmann has thrown into his period piece a collage of musical snippets from, among many bits, "The Sound of Music," Madonna, The Police, and Elton John. In most cases, no one song gets performed without intersplicing. Witness Luhrmann's audacity: the opening number includes a melding of Labelle's "Lady Marmalade" with Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit." And here's the spooky part: it works.

The entire movie plays this way, and for the most part it works. Most surpising is that "Moulin Rouge" has a solid, deeply sincere emotional core. Although the film professes to be about love, I'd add that it is equally about loss. The Moulin Rouge is a playground where adults pretend they are children with the added spice of sensuality.

All the performances are excellent, but the hidden gem is Jim Broadbent as Zidler. Broadbent for years has been doing majestically understated supporting work, from "Brazil" to "Enchanted April" to "Topsy-Turvy." In "Moulin Rouge" he manages to be both repulsive and endearing. His spirited rendition of "Like a Virgin" is classic. Too bad it's not on the soundtrack.

Expect to be overwhelmed by "Moulin Rouge" in the most unexpected, delightful ways. It will make you wonder why other films can't or won't dare to be that bold.


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