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Prior to seeing this movie, all I had heard suggested that I was better
off not watching it unless it was to ridicule. I looked at my uncle
dancing round his living room to some of its music and asked myself if
anybody expected me to take that seriously. It's got a place in movie
history even for the title song alone, though, so I decided I couldn't
live with myself unless I gave it a chance. It was definitely worth it.
The style is reminiscent of a whole host of other '80's teen flicks, but only a handful are better. Most of the cast do great things with their roles. Kevin Bacon actually manages to make the clichéd concept seem kinda cool, here showcasing an easy charm that was to become the hallmark of much of his later work. Crucially, the music is actually pretty good too! (Even if I am torn between wanting to cringe and dance when I hear the theme!)
On reflection it's no cheesier than something like "All the Right Moves" (which has a great cast doing their best but suffers from a plodding story) In fact, it's miles better! At least the music in "Footloose" gave the makers a viable way to pep things up whenever the story begins to flag. This film is much, MUCH better than I had been led to believe, so give it a chance if you ain't seen it yet but thought you knew the score. Chances are, you don't...
The mixing of the sacred with the profane in this movie would have kept Durkheim up at nights. I can tell you this, it has two good songs the title and Let's Hear It For The Boy, like Flashdance they had to import Cougar's Hurt So Good to conceal how bad the rest of the score is. Dienne Wiest, could she be more saintly? Did she come from heaven in a beam of pure light? Young people, when you are Wren, I know, it is misspelled for a reason, the whole world really does not stop when you drive up playing that awful Quiet Riot crap. See, even small towns have their own indigenous deviants, some of which probably make Wren look like a Sunday school teacher. I love that, the whole school comes to a stop when he drives up. There is a word for that it is: Narcissism. They would not have given a big poop. Did you enjoy seeing action star Christopher Penn humiliated like that? No wonder he passed away. I bet he preferred the scene in Best of the Best 2 where he gets his neck snapped. The movie is painful; Lori Singer single handedly destroyed the Man With One Red Shoe. Her beauty is equaled only by her abysmal acting.
I am sorry, votaries, but when I saw this in a theater people were giggling all through Wren's Bible lecture on How God is in to Disco. Please, OK, have mercy, we are eating out here stick to your bad haircut and go bust a seem on your jeans dorky boy. Yes, Wren the expert on theology and how it applies to bad dancing. Trust me, he can read any Psalm he likes if God saw their dancing He would have taken that out of the old testament. Even granting the silly premise, the movie is bad beyond belief. Did somebody say Herbert Ross, the genius who made Undercover Blues? Yes, he is like Stanley Kubrick. The movie is so contrived, silly and unintentionally drop dead funny. I agree with the above reviewer, it is better than Flashdance but so is a pile of dog poop. We get Lord Worfin playing the world's most unbelievable preacher with his saintly wife kindly castrating him for his own good. The whole Electra complex with Ariel and Elmer Gantry: BORING. I can understand her death wish; hey, if I were in this movie I would step in front of a train too.
Gee, show of hands, how many people thought Fire and Brimstone boy wouldn't give in and there would be no dance? Wren leaves town and they all jump off the bridge? The ending is known in advance by anyone who can get ten neurons firing. The scene with Wren testing the limits of his pant's seems in the warehouse is drop dead funny. I and my buddies were not the only people laughing. It made a lot of money but people were giggling all through this turkey. See, if you know the ending within five minutes of the beginning it bores the hell out of us. Herbert Ross made that piece of excrement Seems Like Old Times, and his only big hit The Sunshine Boys is one half of a good movie; the second half is dismal. Only Lithgow can act, he gets terrible performances out of the rest of the cast. Wiest is a 9 on the sphincter scale.
Yes, you will want to cut loose: we all did right out of the freaking theater on this dorkorama cheese ball special. It is full of scenes that are funny that are supposed to be serious and vice versa. A True Lobotomy Special: try hitting yourself in the head many times before viewing. It gets better and better the more brain cells you lose. HOKEY POKEY
"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.
OK, maybe I'm giving in to nostalgia here but I rented "Footloose"
recently and thought it was great. Yes, it's definitely a teen flick,
similar to "Dirty Dancing", and aging a little now.
But the music is great and the plot and themes do as much for me as "Grease" ever did. As teen movies go, it is somewhat original and interesting.
Who should see this film:
-- Teens with nothing better to do on a rainy day
-- People reliving the 1980s, you won't be disappointed to
see this one again
I'll give Footloose a 9 out of 10 because it cheered me up on a day I needed it.
Teenager Ren (Kevin Bacon) moves to a small mid Western town with his
mom after his parents divorce. It seems the Reverend Moore (John
Lithgow), of the town's only church, has totally banned rock and roll
music from the entire town. He has a daughter named Ariel (Lori Singer)
who is basically a hell-raiser--yet loves her father. Rem decides to
stop the ban and bring the town back to life.
OK--we're not dealing with reality here at ALL! A town banning rock music entirely is ridiculous and the town only has ONE church? And the game of chicken using tractors was just silly. And don't get me started on how Bacon, Singer, Chris Penn and Sarah Jessica Parker look WAY too old to be high school students--Singer was THIRTY when she did this! And how the heck did all the kids from the town learn how to dance so quickly? But, as a no brain musical, this does work.
The opening sequence alone is great (it shows various feet dancing to the title tune). Also the acting helps a lot. Bacon is just great--he doesn't take the movie too seriously and gives out a very good performance. He also has a big dance number (to a song called "Never") which is him and THREE different stuntman doing the more unrealistic moves. Singer is too old for her role but she tries. Penn is pretty good as Bacon's best friend--his learning how to dance sequence is a highlight. Parker did this before she was known and she's not bad. Lithgow and Wiest are just great as the Reverend and his wife--Wiest has a great scene where she calmly tells him off and Lithgow (wisely) does not play the Reverend as a one-note character. You see him trying to understand his daughter and slowly realizing that music isn't bad.
So--this is no "Singin in the Rain" but for a 1980s teen musical it's lots of fun. Great songs too. Just turn off your brain and enjoy!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Footloose is the reason why the 80's became such a hit there were so many great movies back then and this one is no exception i do like Kevin Bacon and he was really good in this movie and the dance scenes were really good performed and directed there's also some fight scenes and pretty much the final fight in the movie was the best i mean boot in the face. Rotten Tomatoes gave the movie i think a 59% or something and i try to understand how do they hate movies that they turned out to be Classics on todays standards? Critics even hated The Shining and Predator and even IMDb gave it a 6.5 i mean common? it's nowhere near that bad it's a great great movie.
for those of you that have commented that this story is dumb. It was
on a real story.
Check the net.
Having grown up in a small town in the bible belt this story is very believable. In fact, in some rural areas in the bible belt, many homes dont have running water! So, don't be so quick to say it isn't believable.
Good movie, good music, nothing else to say.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
After the abandonment of his father, Ren McCormack (Kevin Bacon) and
his mother move from Chicago to live with his Aunt Lulu (Lynne Marta)
and Uncle Wes (Arthur Rosenberg) in the small town of Bomont. While
there, Ren experiences culture shock in learning that dancing and
secular music were against the law due to the death of teenagers
involved in an automobile accident after a dance five years prior to
his arrival. Desperate to fit in with the town's society, yet unwilling
to assimilate to its customs, Ren is compelled to generate a revolution
by standing up to the town administrators and proposing a senior prom.
With the help of his friends Willard (Chris Penn), Rusty (Sarah Jessica
Parker), and Ariel (Lori Singer), the dance is passed and the town is
resolved to a positive change.
Within the film "Footloose", the themes of courage, bravery, and hope can be found. Ren had to find bravery and courage within himself in order to take a stand against the town council in proposing the hosting of a senior prom. Willard, Rusty, and Ariel had to generate courage and hope in knowing that their support to Ren's cause would show approved and that the oppressive laws would be abolished.
Many found this film to be entertaining with its lovable characters, musical score, and happy ending. Kevin Bacon plays Ren McCormick and portrays him with a spunky, big city attitude. Willard is played by Chris Penn and is the goofy, redneck friend of Ren. Rusty, played by Sarah Jessica Parker, is the longtime sweetheart of Willard and is always worrisome. Ariel, played by Lori Singer, is the rebellious daughter of the minister and teenage love of Ren. I enjoyed this character combination because their personalities cause me to reminisce about my best friends during my high school years. The film also featured the hit singles of Bonnie Tyler's "Holding Out For A Hero" and Kenny Loggins'"Footloose," which electrified the dance numbers within the movie. Lastly, happy endings are classical ways of ending good stories, especially this one. With the abolishment of the strict dancing laws and the hosting of a dance, Ren fought for what he believed and achieved his ending goal.
Aw, come on IMDb'ers, why the low rating? Where's your sense of
loyalty? I can't hear that Kenny Loggins title song and see those pairs
of dancing feet during the opening credits without sitting down to
watch this whole movie. And even if it's largely to make fun of it, I
still love it for old times' sake.
Kevin Bacon is the tough city kid stuck in some podunk Midwest town where dancing has been outlawed. John Lithgow is the preacher who serves as Bacon's arch nemesis; Lori Singer is the preacher's daughter who has a hankering for the new dangerous kid. Dianne Wiest is the reasonable mom who acts as referee between dad and daughter. The whole thing is sillier than an episode of "Laugh-In," but many of the actors (particularly Lithgow, Wiest and Bacon) are good enough to actually sell the material. And come on, admit it, you know you like the music.
I stayed away from this film for 29 years because of Roger Ebert's
scathing review and the fact that I thought the story was about some
big city fop moving to a small town and dancing on the tables of the
local high school, etc. I was wrong (and so was Ebert). The main
character, Ren (Kevin Bacon), is no dandy -- in fact, he can kick some
arse if necessary -- and he's not dancing through the halls of the high
school every other scene.
THE PLOT: Dancing and loud music have been banned in the remote Utah town of Bomont because of an accident that killed the son of the town's main pastor (John Lithgow). His daughter, Ariel (Lori Singer), rebels against her father's legalistic measures through fornication and daring -- near suicidal -- acts. Ren and Ariel take a liking to each other while the former endeavors to free the town of its stifling legalism.
Also on hand are Chris Penn as Ren's country boy pal, Willard, and Sarah Jessica Parker as Ariel's friend, Rusty. Penn's character is real fun and Sarah was a real cutie back in '84.
Although I didn't see "Footloose" for almost 30 years, the film has acquired a respectable following. Maybe this is what inspired me to finally give-in and view it. I now understand why it's been so popular. "Footloose" has that cinematic magic that pulls you in and gives you a good time. This is just a really entertaining movie.
I also like the depth. We understand Rev. Shaw's grief, but his legalism isn't doing his people or town any good. I also like how Shaw isn't made out to be the clichéd villain. This is a good man thinking he's doing the right thing for his town, and in many ways he is, but the legalistic spirit he cops is sapping the life out of him, his family, his congregants and his town. Does he have the wisdom to see his error and re-route?
The film runs 107 minutes and was shot in areas 30 minutes south of Salt Lake City, on the eastern side of Utah Lake.
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