to love a movie that celebrates something; that throws you into
the midst of a culture that you donít know much about, and shows you why
you should care. Some movies celebrate football, or surfing, or
bobsledding. Footloose celebrates dancing. At the core of it, itís
something we can all relate to. Sometimes you hear a piece of music and
you canít stay still, even if it means tapping your finger on the
steering wheel or nodding your head to the beat.
tranquil appearances, the southern US town of Bomont is going through
tough times. A horror car crash has claimed the lives of some of its
most promising youngsters, causing the local government to implement
tough new laws. Among the list of prohibited activities are drinking,
playing loud music, and perhaps harshest of all, dancing.
MacCormack, a teengager from Boston arrives in town, he instantly runs
afoul of these Draconian laws and their enforcers. After striking up a
rapport with wayward local girl Ariel (Julianne Hough) he earns the
scorn of her father, who happens to be the town preacher.
Reverend and his colleagues soon make up their mind that Ren is a bad
influence on Ariel and the rest of the high-school age kids, especially
when he flies in the face of their customs by trying to organise a
community soon starts challenging its own long-held beliefs, spurred on
by Renís infectious personality and love of dance.
Bacon did it well in 1984, and young dancing actor Kenny Wormald does it
equally well here. Even though his clothing and dance moves are meant as
a nod to the original, Wormaldís screen presence and artistic skill
ensure that he is able to carve his own path in the role.
I admire the most about this film is the fallibility of each of the
characters, even the ostensibly strong ones. Iíll
use Dennis Quaid as a case in point, who is superb as Reverend Moore,
showing both a strong and vulnerable side in his dual roles as preacher
and worried father.
the only weak link in the story is the character of Chuck, played by
Patrick John Fleuger. He is portrayed as an out-and-out bad guy, but we
never despise him as much as weíre
probably supposed to.
I canít go
any further without mentioning the dance choreography, which is
absolutely brilliant. The famous angst-ridden warehouse scene has been
re-created, and is just about worth the price of admission by itself;
Using an ipod chord as part of a dance routine is pretty damn cool.
covers a wide spectrum, from raw blues to pounding rock to country.
There are classics from the 80ís and contemporary hip-hop tracks, with
something for everyoneís tastes.
and mid-range speakers will get a good workout here. The soundtrack is
tight and polished. All colours look bright and natural, and the
film-makers have made the most of some very pretty scenery.
Jump Back: Re-imagining Footloose- A
documentary which charts the production of the film and looks at how
it compares to the original
Everybody Cut: Stars of Footloose- A
look at the cast and the characters they portray
Dancing with the Footloose Stars-
Choreographer Jamal Sims takes us through the creative process
behind each of the major dance sequences
Deleted scenes- these can be watched
with or without commentary by director Craig Brewer
Music videos- ĎFootlooseí by Blake
Shelton, ĎFake IDí by Big & Rich, ĎHolding out for a hero,í by Ella
Footloose rap- An impromptu rap about
the plot of footloose in front of fans
is a celebration of freedom: Freedom of movement, of ideology, of
spirit. But the happier moments are given context by the grittier themes
that the filmmakers have tackled head-on. Itís real, itís relevant and
itís powerful. This is what a remake should be.