Stepping Out is a 1991 musical-comedy film directed by Lewis Gilbert, starring Liza Minnelli, written by Richard Harris and based on a play also written by Harris. Minnelli plays the role ... See full summary »
This is an unusual TV movie from 1989 written by the creators of DYNASTY, Richard and Esther Shapiro. It's a young adult soap set in 1959 about seven young friends straight out of high school (actually most of them were approximately 27 at the time) and their tangles in the real world sort of HAPPY DAYS meets ST. ELMO'S FIRE with more than a touch of a daytime soap. Lindsay Frost is the rich girl loved by no less than three of male leads, rich boy Charles Hunter Walsh (Dylan Walsh), working class Grant Show, and idealistic Steven Weber. Cynthia Gibb is her slightly mousy friend who seems to end up with Lindsay's leftovers. Indeed, at times the movie seems to resemble a period version of Show's series MELROSE PLACE the way characters change partners.
I didn't see this movie when it was first broadcast but it's easy to see it's a (unsold) series pilot under the guise of a TV movie, the ending is so open-ended there are end titles saying what happened to the characters. This film made have been theatrically released in Canada, or at least it was released on video there (it has never been on the home movie market in the states and does not seem to have resurfaced since original broadcast on any USA cable channels which is odd given the later fame of almost the whole cast) and the video was retitled THAT MAGIC MOMENT, quite strangely given it was named after the 50's song "THIS Magic Moment" which is sung her as "THAT Magic Moment" over the opening credits!! Another oddity is Gibb, Krakowski, and the actress playing Eric LaSalle's date are dressed for the 1959 prom in clothes and hairstyles that no way resemble the period and look bluntly 1989. The first half hour is a bit of a chore to sit through but it becomes interesting when Show and Frost's characters move up front from the ensemble although Frost's character's behavior throughout the film doesn't make much sense, she's meant to be sincere but her toying with each guy seems more than a little selfish and her pivotal twist with Show seems stunningly cruel though the character acts as if she is wise and compassionate. The performances are fairly good although LaSalle and Walsh both have smaller roles. The young Grant Show is unbelievably gorgeous in several scenes.
Give the casting director an A at least - all seven were mostly unknown at the time except for Gibb who was an 1980's starlet - but all went on to good careers in the industry: Show in MELROSE PLACE, Weber in WINGS, LaSalle in ER, Jane Krakowski on Broadway, Frost and Gibb have been very active on television, Jace Alexander (as the group jester) went on to become a TV director, and finally Charles Hunter Walsh went on to star in NIP/TUCK renamed as Dylan Walsh.
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