Dance Films Archives - Page 2 of 3 - Can't Stop the Movies
Can't Stop the Movies
28Oct/110

The Plateau of Dance: Stomp the Yard (2007)

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Andrew COMMENTARYI've seen a pattern with these dance movies that's difficult to deny.  This isn't a very intriguing pattern, more one which is starting to grow a bit grating and actually makes me long for the directness of You Got Served and the eventual optimism of Step Up 3D.  Dance films like Stomp the Yard exist as a sort of mirror image of the plot of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

Stomp the Yard - much like Feel the Noise, Step Up and Roll Bounce before it - features a young man who gets into trouble and then has to leave the life he's known for new surroundings.  In each film, the man is initially ostracized and then accepted through the power of dance (or, in the case of Noise, music).  There's the standard love interest, a villain displaying varied degrees of evil, and a thumpin' soundtrack to keep things steady.

21Oct/110

The Plateau of Dance: Planet B-Boy (2007)

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The artistic border doesn't last, thank God, because the dancers are given the full frame to work with in Planet B-Boy.

Andrew COMMENTARYWhile in the process of being derailed by Antonio Banderas and spirited remakes, I have had time to reflect on my remarks with Feel The Noise.  I admired the multicultural spirit behind the film but lamented the lack of dancing.  No matter how pretty the landscape, it still disappointed me to see Omarion (a very talented dancer) relegated to above-average reggaeton production and very little grooving.

I found exactly what I was looking for in Benson Lee's Planet B-Boy.  This is a documentary whose sole focus, start to finish, is to show how hip-hop dance has become a cultural force spread across the entire world and deserves to be recognized as a legitimate art form.  Given the talent on display, it's hard to think of a counter-argument, especially since the film is so nonchalant about making it's case to begin with.

8Oct/110

The Plateau of Dance: Feel The Noise (2007)

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The height of dance is a shakin' in this film. It's good for other reasons, but the dancing is disappointing.

Andrew COMMENTARYFirst of all, I apologize for the delay in this latest installment.  After watching two hours of Antonio Banderas smoldering the screen for two hours two weeks ago I needed a quick break in order to recuperate.  As you may understand, that much untamed sex is a bit hard for anyone to handle, even someone as immersed in the darkness of Swedish films as myself.

But it did give me a chance to rethink the way I've decided to frame this series.  At the beginning I was looking at the evolution of hip-hop dance in films and, slowly, I've started incorporating other portions of culture, both film and otherwise, were blossoming around the same time.  Of course there's the cultural storm of Tyler Perry and other like-minded forms of entertainment with Barbershop, Beauty Shop and Men of Honor.  But there's a greater sense of multicultural diversity in play with these films which is hardly seen in mainstream entertainment, let alone similarly "artistic" indie fare.

23Sep/110

The Plateau of Dance: Take the Lead (2006)

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Ah. I was wondering where the smolder went off to.

Andrew COMMENTARYIt's weird that a movie as formulaic as Take the Lead succeeds in defying some kind of expectation.  Granted, it's a very specific expectation, one established by my broad constraint of looking at modern hip-hop dance in film, but it defied it nonetheless.  Take the Lead was one of those films I thought would fuse the art of hip-hop and tango together into another wacky hybrid.  Much to my surprise it takes tango, ballroom, salsa, and other more traditionally minded dances far more seriously than anticipated.

13Sep/110

The Plateau of Dance: Step Up (2006)

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Andrew COMMENTARYI seem to recall having a certain fondness for the Step Up series.  Heck, I mentioned it in the very first installment of this series when I was outlining just why it is I wanted to write about modern dance films.  Perhaps I was still on an adrenaline high from watching Step Up 3 again, letting the good spirits and athleticism of that film color my whole perception of the series.