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Motion picture companies weren't the only one's cashing in on the
success of teen films. NBC tried it's hand at it as well. Some of the
films included High School USA with Michael J. Fox, Poison Ivy once
again with Fox, Combat High with Keith Gordon, Class Cruise with Billy
Warlock, Crash Course with a host of many teen stars, and this little
teen gem called Dance 'til Dawn.
This film is not bad at all. It has many of the teen stars from the 80s and early 90s. Many notable adult stars make appearances as well, such as Alan Thicke and Kelsey Grammar. So that makes the film a watchable and enjoyable experience. Unlike many failed made for TV movie comedies, this one has lots of charm and heart. The writing is well done for a teen flick. I must've laughed lots during the film. I remember seeing this back in high school and 11 years later I still love it.
By the way, here is a little bit of fascinating trivia. Some of the music for the film was written and performed by 80s one hit wonder Michael Sembello ("Maniac"). I didn't know that until the movie was on again this past weekend. Billy Morrisette makes a small appearance as a kid who works in the video store.
NBC of course doesn't make TV movie teen comedies like this anymore. Still, if you can find this one in the video store by all means, give it a try. You can see what the Hollywood version of a high school prom is like.
When I first saw this one late night on a local station, I was already much
too old for its target audience. Yet I couldn't help but be drawn into this
world. Yes, the kids were somewhat stereotyped and unrealistic. But my own
prom was never this much fun. Not to mention a cast that was a Who's Who of
late '80s sitcoms from all four networks of the time.
Cut to today, fourteen years after the movie premiered. Hens Tooth Video's new DVD is spartan, with no special features whatsoever, but with a nicely sharp picture. And I'm pulled right back into it. Something has changed now. I'm even older, but it still speaks to me. Then it hits me. I'm not only wishing I was young again, I'm also thinking like the parents in this film, whose age I have, alas, reached. I sympathize with them and all their troubles. They no longer seem simply the addled adults. In the final scene at Huds, we see how the experiences of their own youth shaped and misshaped their adult lives. And in truth, not many of us weren't badly messed up as kids. The movie feels more balanced, now that I've seen it from both sides.
So don't just dismiss this as a lightweight teen flick. It has something for everyone - the young, the old and the young at heart.
A group of typical 80s teens worry about their prom on that very special night. Great fun for those of us who grew up in the 1980s. This film is exceptionally notable for its roster of future stars such as Christina Applegate, Alyssa Milano, Kelsey Grammer, Tracey Gold, etc.
When this comic Made-For-TV movie was released in 1988 with all these
stars from popular TV shows from all four networks, we didn't have a
VCR and so, I couldn't tape it. But when it replayed in 1989, we did,
and I taped it, but it was a bad recording--out-of focus picture all
full of lines. In the 1990's, I got a better taping of it when it
replayed on FOX, but frames had been cut out to allow for commercials
that had been included in earlier viewings, ruining this recording. Two
years ago with everything released to DVD these days, I took a chance
and entered its title into my browser and was shocked to find it on
video which I ordered from Amazon.com, only to discover upon its
receipt that it had been released by Turner Broadcasting in 1993!
It has been two years since I received "Dawn" from Amazon.com, and I love it as much as I did the first time I saw it on TV back in 1988. Alan Thick as the insensitive psychiatrist dad to the misunderstood school nerd son Dan played by Chris Young; Kelsey Grammar as the overprotective pharmacist dad who along with wife Edie McClurg is hiding an eighteen-year-old secret from Angela; Mary Frann and Cliff De Young's outrageous bickering in the wake of trying to pacify spoiled daughter Christina Applegate's character Patrice; and Allyssa Milano as the harried girlfriend Shelly Sheridan forced to spend prom night hiding the fact that she and boyfriend Kevin McCrae had split up the day of the prom, because she could not sleep with him, from everyone. The way she found herself in the theater crying over her popcorn seated two rows down from class nerd Dan whose name she remembered as Don, only for him to have to rescue her while she is forced against her desire to use him to hide her out all night. What happened with them after that was inevitable and beautiful as she learned the fast lesson on a starry night that there was more to nerd Dan than met the naked eye without benefit of a telescope. And the whole idea of most popular guy Kevin McCrae asking nerdiest girl in school Angela Strull to take Shelly's place as his prom date because he was told that she was easy, only to find himself falling deeply in like with her as the evening progressed doubly enhanced the lesson that one can't judge a book by its cover.
In this, Brian Bloom's role of the guy who made a bet with his friends that he could get a girl to go out with him for the wrong purpose of sex at the last minute only to find himself falling for her is what every classic movie is made of; we have all experienced the angst of being targeted and taken advantage of by someone we have adulated. But writers Guerdat and Kreinberg had the same opportunity to write Bloom's character as changed and no longer out to hurt Angela, therein conveying the message of respect of girls and standing up to do what was right the same as had Elvis Presley in the 1960 movie, "G.I. Blues." When on furlough in West Germany, Elvis was roped in to replace an army buddy who had been shipped out at the last minute after making a bet with the entire army platoon that he could bed down a shapely dancer at The Club Europa who was played by the fabulous Juliet Prowse, whose character of Lily was spoken of as "an iceberg no man could melt." Elvis was not interested in the bet and didn't want to do it but had no choice other than capitulate, only to find himself liking too much this cold-hearted West German girl he was supposed to use and then dump who was not what he's thought she'd be. But when he saw that her learning the truth would hurt her, he did the most selfless and gracious thing and went against his own desires and broke it off with her, to the dismay of his entire army platoon and all their lost money. But because of Elvis' decency, he felt no remorse when a babysitting situation for a friend got out of control and he had no choice other than call back on Lily for help. Of course, when she learned the truth of his deception and thought he'd used the baby as a gimmick to get her a second time, she told him he'd underestimated his attraction and dumped him, but his action in foiling his friends' bet got him a commendation from the army along with Lily learning the baby had not been a plant. And thus, by his honesty, Elvis ended up getting the girl, with the movie ending with Juliet Prowse telling him that naturally she would marry him. But unlike Presley in "G.I. Blues," in "Dawn," Bloom's character of Kevin; in failing to recognize in his position of most popular guy in school, whose friends had all looked up to him anyway that he could have looked down on them and said no; by his cowardice and refusal to own up to the truth, turned Angela's most magical night into her worst nightmare while stabbing himself all over with pains when she dumped him without preamble even after he had apologized, told her he really liked her and begged for a second chance. Yet with the lesson to be learned stultified by his setup of himself to the mockery of the friends he had tried to impress, very few guys have learned the straightforward lesson Angela herself told Kevin in her hurt disappointment that "he should have liked her first."
This movie is pretty predictable, but I loved it anyway. It was fun to see all those actors from a variety of popular shows together in one movie, and the storyline was funny enough to be entertaining. I especially cheered at the end because the underdogs came out on top. It's good, clean, cheesy fun!
This was my absolute favorite movie as a young teen. We taped it on our
VCR and my sister and I watched it so much, and drove my mom so crazy
with it, that my mom actually had to take it away from us.
We pretty much had it memorized line for line...and when we quoted it, even stretched out our words when Margaret is talking to the guy in the video store...because our tape was so used it stretched out and slurred the words.
We still refer to the movie sometimes. In fact, I know that we have some lingo that we use that came from the movie. I don't think I go through a fast food drive-through without remembering Shelly and Dan at the drive-through ordering all that food. It's a movie that has just really stuck with me as I've grown up.
I'm 30 now and just ordered the DVD and can't wait to see it again -- it'll be like a reunion with old friends!!!
This one is better than all of those teen movies that are made right now.... It has got style, there are no rude jokes. You can't take your eyes off your tv screen cos there's always something new happening.... I recommend it to everybody.
Was feeling a little blue when I put this in the DVD player, so when I found myself laughing out loud, I knew there was something going on here. The first time I cracked up was when the Dan Lefcourt character walks down the aisle of an all-night movie theater, intently watching the action on the screen and juggling his snacks. The theater is almost deserted, yet he manages to blindly sit down in one of the few occupied seats. The brief and subtle reactions and interplay is great! Not the over-the-top, beat a dead horse kind of attempts at humor so common in many so-called comedies today. (I believe the young actor's name is Chris DeYoung. He's likable, and I'm surprised he didn't have a bigger career.) He's also in another lol bit. Alyssa Milano plays Shelley, who wishes to remain unseen while in the company of the above mentioned Dan. As they scuttle out of a restaurant on all fours to leave unnoticed, Mr. Strull (Kelsey Grammar)comments, wondering what they might have had to eat. Check this movie out. Many more funny moments, but these come to mind.
The movie itself isn't very special, it is a typical teenage comedy
where a nerd become very popular, and all the "bitches" are punished...
But i think that a growing teenager needs this kind of fairytales.
Angela represents a dream, we all wished to come trough.. its very
optimistic, with a positive ending. All persons in the movie accept new
ideas, thoughts, they realize what they want, need, and who their real
friends are. Now i know that this is just a movie and that things like
that don't happen, but still i like to watch it over and over, because
it is funny, optimistic, and it helps you, when you're down for some
My advice: this movie, popcorn, lot of friends, and you'll have FUN!
I saw this movie when I was a little girl. As movies that appear on TV,
most people don't remember a week later. This movie stood out in my mind,
and years later, I found out that it was appearing on a cable channel. I
immediately found a blank tape and taped the movie. One night, I
it to my husband, and he asked to see the movie. It became a favorite
him, and we've watched it more than once.
If you're looking for a good '80's movie, this is one to see. You'll see all the old stars that were in your favorite TV shows, and some stars that are still in movies and TV today, such as Matthew Perry, who currently stars on Friends.
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