This is a movie where three entirely different stories are told though dancing. Words are not used and the style of dancing is different for each part. Kelly is a clown in the 'Circus'; a ... See full summary »
A documentary film about dancing on the screen, from it's orgins after the invention of the movie camera, over the movie musical from the late 20s, 30s, 40s 50s and 60s up to the break dance and the music videos from the 80s.Written by
Stephan Eichenberg <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The footage for the Broadway sequence was initially slated to begin with a photo montage of Broadway-to-Hollywood showstoppers unfolding over "Luck Be a Lady" (The Crapshooters Ballet) from Guys and Dolls (1955). The snippets, each timed to punctuate the underscoring, included Reiko Sato, Patricia Dunn and Wonci Lui in "Not Since Nineveh" from Kismet (1955); Judy Holliday and Doria Avila in "Mu-Cha-Cha" from Bells Are Ringing (1960); "Safety in Numbers" from The Boy Friend (1971); "A Secretary is Not a Toy" from How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (1967); Mitzi Gaynor in "Anything Goes" from Anything Goes (1956); Yuriko in "The Small House of Uncle Thomas" from The King and I (1956); "The Telephone Hour" from Bye Bye Birdie (1963); Julie Newmar in the Sadie Hawkins Day Ballet from Li'l Abner (1959); the cowboys entrance in "Laurey Makes Up Her Mind" from Oklahoma! (1955); Gene Kelly, Alex Romero and Lee Scott in "A Day in New York" from On the Town (1949); Carol Haney, Buzz Miller and Kenneth LeRoy in "Once a Year Day" from The Pajama Game (1957); Juliet Prowse in "Can-Can" from Can-Can (1960); Barbara Hancock in the Rain Dance Ballet from Finian's Rainbow (1968); Debbie Reynolds and Harve Presnell in "I Ain't Down Yet" from The Unsinkable Molly Brown (1964); Shirley MacLaine in "Dis-Donc, Dis-Donc" from Irma La Douce (1963); the Entrance of the Clans from Brigadoon (1954); "The Waiters' Gallop" from Hello, Dolly! (1969); Natalie Wood in "Let Me Entertain You" from Gypsy (1962); Janet Leigh and Betty Garrett in "Conga!" from My Sister Eileen (1955); and the Wedding Dance from Fiddler on the Roof (1971), culminating in the final bars of the Crapshooters Ballet itself. Following this, the Broadway sequence was originally to have included "Something to Dance About" from Call Me Madam (1953), performed by Donald O'Connor and Vera-Ellen; "June is Bustin' Out All Over" from Carousel (1956); "Whatever Lola Wants, Lola Gets" from Damn Yankees (1958), performed by Gwen Verdon; "There's Gotta Be Something Better Than This" from Sweet Charity (1969), performed by Shirley MacLaine, Chita Rivera and Paula Kelly; and a medley of sequences from West Side Story (1961) comprised of the Prologue, "The Dance at the Gym" and "America," performed by Russ Tamblyn, Rita Moreno, George Chakiris and The West Side Story Dancers. See more »
Famous dancing stars Mikhail Baryshnikov, Liza Minnelli, Sammy Davis, Jr., Ray Bolger and Gene Kelly host this tepid retrospective on classic dance numbers from musical films (most of them made at M-G-M), a trend begun in 1974 with the song-oriented "That's Entertainment!" Spotlighting the high-energy dance sequences from Hollywood's chestnuts must have seemed like a no-brainer, but what isn't discussed is why today's dance films have proved to be no threat to the masters. It's a piqued, juiceless formula capped with cold charisma. Our hosts (and hostess Minnelli, who never danced in an M-G-M film and is here only by proxy) have very little light to shed on the history of dancing cinema, and it all quickly congeals into a moist-eyed, redundant piece of anemic nostalgia. *1/2 from ****
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