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Footloose (1984)

6.4
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 40,431 users  
Reviews: 104 user | 63 critic

A city teenager moves to a small town where rock music and dancing have been banned, and his rebellious spirit shakes up the populace.

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Title: Footloose (1984)

Footloose (1984) on IMDb 6.4/10

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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A white midwestern girl moves to Chicago, where her new boyfriend is a black teen from the South Side with a rough, semi-criminal past.

Director: Thomas Carter
Stars: Julia Stiles, Sean Patrick Thomas, Kerry Washington
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Ren
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Willard (as Christopher Penn)
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Elizabeth Gorcey ...
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Jim Youngs ...
Douglas Dirkson ...
Lynne Marta ...
Arthur Rosenberg ...
Timothy Scott ...
Alan Haufrect ...
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Storyline

Classic tale of teenage rebellion and repression features a delightful combination of dance choreography and realistic and touching performances. When teenager Ren McCormack and his family move from big-city Chicago to a small Midwestern town, he's in for a real case of culture shock. Though he tries hard to fit in, the streetwise Ren can't quite believe he's living in a place where rock music and dancing are illegal. However, there is one small pleasure: Ariel Moore, a troubled but lovely blonde with a jealous boyfriend. And a Bible-thumping minister, who is responsible for keeping the town dance-free. Ren and his classmates want to do away with this ordinance, especially since the senior prom is around the corner, but only Ren has the courage to initiate a battle to abolish the outmoded ban and revitalize the spirit of the repressed townspeople. Fast-paced drama is filled with such now-famous hit songs as the title track and "Let's Hear It for the Boy". Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

One kid. One town. One chance. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 February 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Foot-loose  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$8,200,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$80,000,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Chris Penn could not dance, so they had to teach him in terms of what he already knew: wrestling. See more »

Goofs

In the opening sequence, Ariel transfers from the car to the pickup, the passenger side mirror is on the truck. Later at the drive inn, the mirror is missing. It appears and disappears at various intervals throughout the movie, most likely so as to not block the shot of the actors. See more »

Quotes

Wes: Seems that a bunch of kids was raising some hell over at Burlington Cranton's property a few days back. Tore up the fields, turned over a tractor and everything. Today someone suggested to me there's been some trouble up at the high school. I think it was drugs. You don't happen to know anything about that, do you.
Ren: [Quietly] No.
Wes: What was that? I can't hear you.
Amy: He said no.
Lulu: Amy.
Ren: I said no, sir.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Confessions of an Action Star (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Never
Written by Michael Gore and Dean Pitchford
Performed by Moving Pictures
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Silly, but lighthearted caper
24 June 2002 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

"Footloose" is a fun and very lighthearted motion picture that promises a good time and delivers.

The film has a simple, if unlikely, plotline. Streetsmart but gentle teenager Ren MacCormack(Kevin Bacon) arrives from the big city with his mother in the backwater town of Bomont. Enrolling at the local high school, he is appalled to discover the town's adults have imposed a law on "public dancing" and rock music, as enforced and practiced by the local preacher(John Lithgow). Ren quickly sets about changing things, falling in love with the preacher's daughter Ariel (Lori Singer) in the process.

The story is a little unlikely yet it is perfectly suitable for the teenaged audience at which it is pitched. The script takes some time to explore its simple theme - dancing and rock music, and what they symbolise for young people. Three scenes help to lay this out. The first sees Ren dancing by himself in a barn; the town meeting where Ren presents his case to the townspeople and explains to them the meaning of the dance; and the final prom sequence in which the teens of Bomont revel in their newfound liberation.

As the leading man, Kevin Bacon carries off his role very well. Ren isn't really a macho hero revelling in coolness, he's a down-to-earth young man trying to the right thing by his peers. His romance with Lori Singer's character Ariel is formulaic but perfectly inoffensive.

The film could have perhaps done with a little more nastiness to fully contrast against Ren's earnest intentions. Even Ariel's brutish boyfriend(Jim Young) fails to inject much tension in this respect and the final fistfight between him and Ren comes across as being a bit lame.

John Lithgow's characterisation is very good but it is a little too subtle. As the town Reverend and preacher of all things pure and holy, his extreme views come across not so much as puritanical, just merely uptight. The change that eventually occurs in his attitudes is hinted at very early on. The result is that he is nowhere near is frightening or intimidating a character as he could have been. At the same time his troubled relationships with his rebellious daughter and quiet wife(Dianne Wiest) are very well written and acted. In these scenes he excels and his character's development seems very natural.

On the technical side, the film is well-shot and the gloriously Eighties soundtrack complements the proceedings very well, bringing the necessary exhuberance and bounce to the whole movie.

Whilst "Footloose" is certainly no masterpiece, it succeeds in being a lighthearted knockabout caper, and as such is a very enjoyable movie.


38 of 43 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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