YMMV / Cabaret

  • Adaptation Displacement: The movie and musical are much more well-known than the play "I Am A Camera" and the original stories by Christopher Isherwood.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: The Emcee is especially prone to this, given his ambiguous nature as relates to the actual story.
  • Best Known for the Fanservice: The musical number everyone remembers from the movie is of course "Mein Herr" - as it features Sally doing a sexy dance around a chair.
  • Broken Base: Averted, very notably. Joel Grey and Alan Cumming played radically different versions of the Emcee, but most every fan of the show will tell you that both interpretations are completely valid. It helps that both men have expressed professional admiration for the other and encourage fans not to dismiss the other's portrayal.
  • Critical Research Failure: A minor but odd one that seems to vary from production to production; in the finale, if/when the Emcee reveals his prison uniform, it usually has both an inverted pink triangle and a yellow star. In some versions, the pink triangle is overlayed on a yellow triangle to form a star, like it would in an actual concentration camp. Other versions of the outfit, however, have the star and pink triangle as separate objects on the uniform. This doesn't detract from the Wham Shot or how hard it hits, though.
  • Do Not Do This Cool Thing: See "Misaimed Fandom", but even if you're not a neo-Nazi, "Tomorrow Belongs to Me" is sung and filmed in such a way as to be quite stirring, especially when everyone in the park joins in.
  • Fridge Horror:
    • The editing makes it clear Sally's baby is the Emcee's.
    • In some versions of the play, the Emcee being revealed to be Jewish adds an extra layer to the Wham Line in "If You Could See Her", especially if one interprets it as him performing it in the actual Kit Kat Klub.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: Natasha Richardson played Sally in a 2000's revival... and her singing "From cradle to tomb isn't that long a stay!" has become a lot harsher given she died suddenly and tragically a few years later.
  • Funny Moments:
    • The big group English lesson between Brian, Natalia, Friz and Sally in the film. Brian wants Sally to leave especially, but Natalia insists she stays so they can have a natural conversation. She of course brings up the topic of sex, which Natalia doesn't understand the English for. Sally eventually finds the German word.
      Brian: That would be the one German word you pronounce perfectly.
    • They talk about how one can catch syphilis. Natalia mentions cups just as Brian hands her a cup of tea.
    • Natalia telling Sally about Fritz 'pouncing' on her. She essentially tells Sally she's going to her for advice because she knows about men, due to her "many screwings". She also takes special time to describe Fritz as having "no respect for my father's library sofa".
  • Inferred Holocaust: Literally. The final shot of the movie shows that Sally is performing in front of a crowd of Nazi officers. Fritz and Natalia are now a married couple, Fritz being open about being Jewish - so it's unsure of how things will go for them. Sally too is associated with a club that has been poking fun at the Nazis in their skits a couple of times - so it's unknown if she'll be punished for that at some point. Or else her partying ways will catch up with her like her friend Elsie in the "Cabaret" song.
  • LGBT Fan Base: The film depicts bisexuality in a positive(ish) way and features the daughter of another gay icon, so naturally this is a given.
  • Misaimed Fandom: "Tomorrow Belongs to Me" is popular among neo-Nazis, who are either oblivious to or don't care about its origins, and several racist or neo-Nazi bands have covered it. From the other side, some people don't quite realize exactly what it is about and think its just a general "let's do our best" song, which leads to people singing it at concerts and what have you. It doesn't help that it has a pretty cool rhythm.
  • Moral Event Horizon: In the 2012 London revival, Ernst Ludwig crosses this at the very end when he kills Sally, the Emcee and the other members of the Kit Kat Klub in a gas chamber.
  • Nightmare Fuel:
    • The reprise of "Tomorrow Belongs to Me," when just about all of the guests at the engagement party begin singing along. As Fraulein Schneider later says, "I can no longer dismiss the Nazi Party. Now they are my friends and neighbors."
    • The movie version of "Tomorrow Belongs to Me" starts off disarmingly pleasant, but swiftly becomes horrifying when the audience of common, ordinary people begin standing up and singing along and become swept up in the nationalist fervor, and it becomes obvious to the audience that these ordinary people are the grassroots support that allowed the Nazis to rise.
    • The ending to the 2012 London revival has the Emcee, Sally and the Kit Kat Klub boys and girls being herded into gas chambers by Ernst Ludwig. Because clearly the original ending wasn't enough of a downer.
  • Tear Jerker: "I Don't Care Much".
  • Testosterone Brigade: Despite the LGBT fanbase mentioned above, this film does feature Liza Minelli performing in very skimpy and sexy outfits on stage - not to mention wearing very little in public too.