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Monday, February 7, 2011

Its the Way you Move me

Dancing, a ritual of human life from war to lust. Whangaries use it to prepare for battle and numerous societies use it for expressing desire or preparing the body for fertility. Some use it to escape, while others use it to be seen. In many films, dance is utilized by a younger generation to create a distance, a statement of itself, from the previous generation. Dance is used as rebellion and self-discovery. Here we look at films in which dance is not only a presentation, but a way of moving the story and therefore connecting the actors. 

You won't be disappointed, dance is also used to get the girl.

"Top Hat" (1935) - A discussion on dance would be nothing with out a notice to Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Clever dialogue, glorious costumes, well chosen sets show the 1930's as a mecca of movies. 

"Strictly Ballroom" (1992) - A fun comedy romp is an Australian specialty - but who knew they would do dance so beautifully- Baz Luhrmann has shown himself to be a master of the dance film but this one is exceptional. Its humor, film style and editing make it an interesting and silly watchable piece. 

"Shall We Dance" ( 1996) - While all three versions of this film are decent- its the Japanese film I highly recommend here- a subtle play on cultural values capture something sweet and intense as the dancers gain a new level of self-esteem and insight. 

"Stomp the Yard" (2007) - Moving, overlapping story-lines don't distract you from the true star of this film - the dance. 

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