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Guest alescna

Movies: Dance movies?

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calamitous

DD and I watched Turning Point last night. I saw it back when it orginally came out, but DD had never seen Baryshnikov dance. It has some very lovely dance sequences and DD and DH who both act also had a good time laughing at poor Leslie Browne's acting. Lovely dancer, but ...

 

It was a wonderful family movie to watch, specially with DD at 14 who could sort of understand the decisions made by each women and regrets and joy they lead to.

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Guest pink tights

Oh, "The Turning Point"! I was 13 when it came out--probably saw it 10 times at the theatre. Back then, it was considered quite adult. Almost 30 years later, it's still a fav, but I have a new perspective...

 

Love "Fossee", "The Red Shoes", "Billy Eliot"...."The Ballet Russe".....most excellent.

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blochbuyer

I saw "The Children Of Theatre Street" at the cinema when I was a child and spurred on by this talk of it I ordered it (had to get it from USA as not available here)to give it to DD as Christmas present. I decided to have a sneak preview and although it is old I felt it was a very charming film, in which a tiny slice of life in USSR was captured. I dont mean all the staged pieces but what you see in the background- all those old babushkas sitting in groups and the clothes etc. Also watching the children dance was pleasing. I watched a Polish film about a girl who gets into the top gymnastics academy, despite being almost too old etc and that had the same charm. This film also showed body conditioning similar to what the children do in the Russian film - hang from climbing bars and do leg raises. Can't remember what it was called though - it was a children's film.

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Hamorah
Can anyone tell me if the DVD is closed captioned? I am hard of hearing and rely on captioning for movies. I have been wanting to see this documentary as a good friend/mentor of mine was a member of Ballet Russes in the late 50's.

 

 

I should be getting my copy soon - but it will be for Code 2 areas not USA. I will let you know if it has subtitles. If yes, and if the US version turns out to be without close captions AND you have access to a multi zone DVD player, it might be worth your while to order it from England, even though it will probably be more expensive. By the way, there is supposed to be an extra hour of documentary on the DVD that wasn't on the film.

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christa1217

Yesterday I watched:

 

Ballerina, A Story of the Royal Danish Ballet

 

It's an older movie but filmed in color, and my dance teacher gave it to me from her personal collection

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vagansmom

Christa1217, can you give us a little review of this movie? I have never seen it. Is it a history of the Royal Danish Ballet or a biography of a particular dancer? Or is it a fictional story?

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christa1217

It's a story centered on a student at the Royal Danish Ballet who "reaches her dreams" by dancing a solo in Coppelia. In the movie the girl's name is Mette Sorenson, I'm not quite sure if she is fictional.

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Funny Face

I didn't/couldn't watch any movies subsequent to Katrina for some time -- too disoriented. But - recently learned how to hook up DVD machine (yay!) and watched "Shall We Dance" on DVD -- the director's lecture about the movie is as long as the movie itself, and quite enlightening about so many details we don't initially pay attention to. The movie, like most, is not without flaws, but I certainly got the idea the director did his research. There's also a very interesting alternative beginning, which has much more emphasis on dancers than on Richard Gere. Worth checking out.

 

Don't like to nit pick, but -- both in "Chicago" and "Shall We Dance," Gere comes across to me as a layman who gets amused when he catches on to something at last. He never quite becomes a dancer. Too round shouldered in "Shall We Dance."

 

Also, Lopez works hard, but there is something, especially in her reflective solo at the end, where her posture/technique just isn't up to snuff. She's moving fast and emoting with passion, etc., but the actual technique is lacking. But I can tell she worked hard.

 

Still love "Turning Point" which put ballet on the mainstream map in the 1970s.

 

"Flashdance" is more of a cult favorite for people -- so many flaws, but definitely an 80s icon. Worth watching for the underrated Cynthia Rhodes. There's a girl who could do it all. Too bad there wasn't more of a vehicle to showcase her talents.

 

Probably could write a thesis on "Center Stage." Had more potential than it lived up to, but fun to watch. If I let a pre-teen watch it, I'd do so with him/her.

 

I'll always be curious about the mysterious film Swayze made with his wife in Winnipeg. All that work that went into "Without a Word" and it only played to a few. Has anyone managed to see it? Mel???

 

Will always love "All That Jazz," definitely a dancer's dance movie. Gritty, compelling.

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ddm3

Someone already mentioned Strictly Ballroom, but I have to second that. It has been one our family's all time favorite movies! The Australian humor is extremely entertaining. My now 18 year old, used to be enamoured with "Tina Sparkle"! It is definitely a must see in my opinion. Has it already been mentioned that Leslie Browne was not the original dancer/actress cast for the Turning Point? Gelsey Kirkland was to play the role but turned in down for personal reasons. That's an interesting bit of trivia!

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dancemomCA

:clapping: I would have to say "Strictly Ballroom" is one of our family favourites as well - I keep remembering that line "There are NO new steps". Such a hilarious, yet oddly somewhat sad and emotional movie. My DS loved the wild 80's hair and competition makeup!

 

And if anyone can watch the Japanese original of "Shall We Dance" it is so much better than the most recent movie with Gere and Lopez. English subtitles do not take anything away from the lovely understated, yet poignant performances of the leads.

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rozin
Just wanted to say that the DVD of the Ballets Russes documentary is out. I'm not sure if it's been released yet in an NSTC version, but it's out on VHS - European version. I've ordered it and can't wait to get my copy - it's meant to be brilliant!

 

It is. Whole family watched this last night, including every outcut interview.

 

Why? Just a quick comment: the testimony, humour, dedication and resilience of the dancers interviewed is remarkable. I wept when Wakefield Poole described being on stage during Swan Lake. And the humanity and sensitivity to line, form and expression of Nathalie Krassovska is truly awe-inspiring: watch her coaching pas de deux – spectre de la rose - with George Zoritch, for example.

 

For humour, seeing Nathalie K with George Z walking through the Giselle-Prince meeting scene is totally delightful: he is 83 and indicating that running to catch her is impossible...

 

Nini Theilade comes across as warm, intelligent, full of fun and totally committed to the future of dance via teaching the next generations.

 

There are comments throughout from the ‘baby ballerinas’ (which ballerinas were NOT babies for the Ballets Russes – one might ask) Tatiana Riabouchinska, Irina Baranova and Tamara Tchinarova.

 

This is a total a* documentary and a real must-view for dancers of all ages, all balletophiles, historians etc.

R and family.

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Guest pink tights

I took my reluctant non-dancing husband (along with ballet obsessed dd) to see "Ballet Russe" at our local art house theatre last fall. It was a turning point...he finally realized and understood our passion. Over the years he has seen countless Nuts, Swan Lake, Giselle, Romeo and Juliet, a few contemporary ballets, some modern, along with a few ballet movies. But seeing the "Ballet Russe" changed him--he now has an appreciation for classical ballet. He considers it mandatory viewing for any dance student or fan....in fact he has ordered a copy as a special gift for dd!! I know he shed a few tears during the reunion scene.

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Pasdetrois

A sweet and charming 'kiddie' movie that has recently been released on DVD is 'Ballet Shoes'. It's about three orphans named the Fossils. I loved it when my kids were young. A BBC production set in the 30's I think. A delightful bit of escape for younger children. The dancing most certainly is not brilliant but the premise of trying, trying hard and winning is a feel good movie. Some of the things they wear to dance really make you take a step backwards. I actually remember the styles and I didn't think I was anywhere near that long in the tooth. If you have tinies who are not yet sophisticated it's a delight!

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Hamorah

With reference to Ballet Shoes - I find it very nice in this computer age that so many generations of children (and adults) enjoyed and still enjoy Noel Streatfeild's wonderful books. We had different names for them in the UK, so I'm not quite sure what the US names are for them all, but, even though the language and time line is very much England in the 'forties and 'fifties, the children seem very real and the story lines still relevant to today's young hopefuls.

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Hamorah

Re the Ballets Russes DVD

 

Having finally watched through the DVD and all the extras - I totally agree with every word Rozin wrote above. And I also loved it when Freddie Franklin was talking about still performing the Priest in Romeo at 86. If I remember rightly he said something to the effect of - Why not - I'm a dancer - this is what I do. Hope I'll still feel like that in 30 years time. :(

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