Tl;dr objectively not that great but I liked it a lot. Saw two times, would see again. The plot is as cliched as it can be, a typical journey per aspera ad astra. The two parts I found rather refreshing were that (a) the main character is a heavy perfectionist, hence most of his inner struggle in the movie, and (b) throughout the movie the emphasis gradually shifts from "win at all costs" to "do your best, be your best, enjoy yourself, and screw all the rest." Overall, all the plot devices are definitely tired and overused, but they still work. Or at least, they worked for me. Visually, the film is beautiful. Beautiful dancing (although more on that a bit later), beautiful Paris, beautiful people of various races, ages and colors. Definitely a feast for the eyes. The characters are all likable, even the "mean" ones. Most of them are just genuinely good people you'd want to hang out with. Also A+ for gay representation, I really liked the way it was done in the movie. The music is nice and catchy, especially the song in the end credits. However the piece the team chose for the competition was as unoriginal as humanly possible. It was, of course, beautiful, and it did fit the choreo's idea and message, but... come on, is it the only (SPOILER) classic (/SPOILER) tune they could come up with? The competition dance was also... meh. Definitely the worst choreo in the movie. There were so many beautiful, inspired pieces throughout the movie; did the team run out of ideas in the end? However the duet / pas de deux was beautifully done - not because it was technically exquisite or perfectly executed (I don't think Chloe is a very talented ballerina), but because it was so very emotional, passionate and soulful. I did tear up a bit. The hip hop dances were good... I think. I don't really know much about hip-hop and breakdancing, but I thought the choreography was very impressive and well executed. The ballet, however... Somehow I got an impression that the creators of the movie don't know much about ballet. (Here's when I get a but geeky, sorry about that.) First, there's too much glamour. I don't know, maybe it's a French thing, but from what I've seen, most ballet dancers and teachers dress like bums when they're working. They don't care much about their hairdo, but they do care about warmth and comfort. But then again, I've only seen clips from the Vaganova academy and some behind-the-scenes videos from the Royal Opera House, etc.; I've never been to a ballet school or a ballet competition, so maybe I'm wrong. Second, like I've said before, Chloe is not a very talented ballerina. I'm not an expert, but I've seen enough beautiful dancing to notice some very wooden arms. A true ballerina's arms are a thing of wonder, a song of body, flowing like water and fluttering like wings (see Zakharova, Lopatkina, Nunez, etc.) So if you want to see some really beautiful ballet, that's not the movie for you; YouTube is your best bet instead. Third, at one point Chloe says there's no place in ballet for the black, the too short, and the too tall. Well, that's patently not true. Francesca Hayward, the principal dancer of the ROH, is black and tiny (5' 2" / 157 cm) - and she's a bloody supernova on stage. The legendary Uliana Lopatkina is six feet tall - a giant! Misty Copeland, the principal dancer of the very theatre (American Ballet Theatre) the main character supposedly wants to get in, is black. The famous Carlos Acosta is black, etc., etc. I mean, it's true that ballet is highly standardised, but there's always room for difference as long as you are talented, work hard, and find ways to conceal your faults or even turn them into advantages (like Lopatkina's huge ass feet that somehow make her rises on pointe that much more beautiful.) Last but not least, at one point a minor character says about a slightly unconventional ballet choreo, "That's not ballet!" O rly. Is this a parallel universe where Kylián, Forsythe, Bourne, Leon & Lightfoot, etc. didn't happen and the ballet world is still stuck in the Petipa era? This line is both ignorant and mighty cliched, especially considering that the American Ballet Theatre does a lot of contemporary ballet. /End rant Overall, this movie is not very original and not very true to the facts. However, it's beautiful, funny, and rather inspirational. If you're looking for some light entertainment, you're definitely in for a treat.
Comedy / Drama / Family / Music
Comedy / Drama / Family / Music
Joseph, passionate dancer of hip-hop, refuses to enter the company of his father to try his luck in Paris. With his girlfriend Emma and his best friend Karim, he joins the Paris crew of ...
September 26, 2020