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Dance Flick

A movie released May 22, 2009

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On Pointe--For the Most Part

  • Jun 10, 2009
  • by
 The Wayans Brothers, to me, are like Christopher Guest.  Guest's films are funny only if you the world he is satirizing.  Waiting For Guffman--I screamed with laughter from minute one.  Best In Show--a two-hour question mark. For Your Consideration--a triumph.  A Mighty Wind--a dial tone.  So, I chose wisely what I would see after I'm Gonna Get You Sucka and the first years of In Living Color.  And Dance Flick, the newest Wayans Brothers enterprise, was a no-brainer.

And so, let's check off the liabilities rather quickly.  The highest, to me, is Shoshanna Bush as Megan.  She looks just a little too old to keep the pace with the rest of the cast. plus, she's wearing way too much make-up most of the time.  I always wondering if there is a female dancer out there that could show her comic side in a role like this.  Hayden Panetierre is the first name that comes to mind.

Then there's the choreography.  Dave Scott came up with some great street dance-based phrases for the battling dance crews!  So, I am wondering what happened with the ballet sequences.  I've had a chance to think about it. They weren't as strong as the dance battles.  The other sequence that was singularly weak was the "Flame" sequence. While the scene was a spot-on recreation of the flavor of "Fame", I wasn't very happy with technically based dancing being equated with gayness.  (And now, I will cop to my own hypocrisy.  I have just choreographed "Altar Boyz" and I did the same thing with a section in a certain number. Shame on me.  Trust me--it won't happen again.) And again, in the case of the mean girl, played by Christina Murphy, may be a stick thin girl but she's no dancer.  Making her move isn't a pretty thing. Speaking of movers, where are the ILC Fly Girls? I would have loved to have seen Deidre Lang or Carrie Ann Inaba. They, as the others, are gorgeous dancers that are still very much in their prime.

Lastly, there are a few too many plates spinning with this one. The scene with the bizarre acting teacher, played by Marlon Wayans, slows the film down and is one plate that needed not to be put up in the air, so to say.  The only purpose this scene serves is a reminder that Marlon Wayans is one of the most misused actors in folm these days.  He is a funny man but his work in Requiem for a Dream is proof that his a strong and compelling actor that needs a good role to show himself off. But this is something I don't give them credit for.

Now moving on to the good stuff.  Damon Wayans, Jr. as Thomas Uncles. The young man is a star in the making. He's even better looking than his father and he has more dance capability than his leading lady.  David Alan Grier is hilarious as the greedy underworld figure extorting money from Thomas and his friends. And Essence Atkins is likewise hilarious in a role that could grated on the audience's nerves after five minutes.  Wayans' satire of dance themed films from Center Stage to Hairspray is, for the most part, easily recognizable and spot on.  And, of course, no stone goes unturned. Wayans takes a crack at everything and everyone from Chris Brown to Halle Berry to Amy Winehouse to Twilight.  And, I don't know how he managed it, but he even takes a shot at recently deceased prima ballerina Melissa Hayden with the character of a bitch dance teacher played by Amy Sedaris.

In addition to bringing out as many members of his family as he can (residual checks are a good stocking stuffer, you know)he also brings out some fairly new talent as well. Brendan Hillard and Chelsea Makela are fun as they spoof Zac Efron and Nikki Blonsky's personas in High School Musical and Hairspray.  Both of them will go quite far.

I had fun when I saw this film. I hope that others will enter in to the spirit of the thing and have fun too.

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June 10, 2009
Hey Darryl, great review of Dance Flick!  I really enjoyed your unique way of tackling all of the different subjects in the film.  As far as the movie being a parody, how did you feel is compared to other films in the parody genre?  I also noticed that you mentioned Hayden Panettiere a couple of times.  If you enjoy her work, you might want to check out our page on Heroes.  Also, you can share your reviews now using the share box at the top of the page to sites like Facebook and Twitter!  Again, Nice write up, keep it coming!

About the reviewer
Darryl Clark ()
Ranked #786
i'm just a nice young man--not too young and--not too nice!    i'm also terribly original but i can say with pride i steal from the best. rather than draw this profile section out, … more
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Genre: Comedy
Release Date: May 22, 2009
MPAA Rating: PG-13

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