The love life of Charlotte is reduced to an endless string of disastrous blind dates, until she meets the perfect man, Kevin. Unfortunately, his merciless mother will do anything to destroy their relationship.
Mary Fiore is San Francisco's most successful supplier of romance and glamor. She knows all the tricks. She knows all the rules. But then she breaks the most important rule of all: she falls in love with the groom.
John Clark is a middle aged Chicago estate lawyer. He loves his family, which includes his wife Beverly, but their combined busy schedules and getting caught in a rut after two decades of marriage has left him feeling unfulfilled. While taking the el train home every night, he notices the same young, beautiful contemplative woman staring out of one of the windows of Miss Mitzi's Dance Studio, which specializes in ballroom. He is intrigued enough with her beauty and sadness to go in one evening on his way home. He learns that she is Paulina, one of the instructors and a former world class ballroom dancer. Because of her, he signs up for beginner group dance lessons, regardless of them being taught by Miss Mitzi herself, and not Paulina. As time progresses, John gets caught up in the lives of those at Miss Mitzi's: his two fellow classmates - overweight Vern who wants to learn to dance for his upcoming wedding, and Chic, who wants to impress the ladies - and two of the studio's ... Written by
I saw the Japanese original film "Shall We Dance?" few years ago and I was charmed by its subtlety and delicacy. I did not plan to see the remake because I am not crazy about the remakes in general and I did not look forward to see Lopez or Gere in the movie together. When I finally saw the movie (my mom who's seen both films highly recommended the American version to me), I was surprised how much I enjoyed it.
The cultural contrast of the Japanese film ceased to exist in the 2004 movie but there is still a lot to like in it. First of all, I love to watch good dancing and "Shall We Dance?" has plenty of it. Gere's and Lopez's dancing together has grace and passion, and it was a wonderful moment in the film.
Then, there are memorable and funny supporting characters that had screen time enough to become more than the lifeless shadows - Stanley Tucci (Link) and Lisa Ann Walter (Bobbie) for whom the ballroom dancing is the road to freedom, and happiness.
And the last but not the least, the movie is asking the question, how to make a man happy if he's got everything - the job he enjoys, the family he loves, his health, and good looks but something is missing? It would take more than any movie to answer the question but perhaps it would help one day just take a different road and open a new door?
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