7.7/10
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Shall We Dance? (1996)

Shall we dansu? (original title)
PG | | Comedy, Drama, Music | 11 July 1997 (USA)
Trailer
1:22 | Trailer

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A successful but unhappy Japanese accountant finds the missing passion in his life when he begins to secretly take ballroom dance lessons.

Director:

Masayuki Suo

Writer:

Masayuki Suo
55 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kôji Yakusho ... Shohei Sugiyama (as Koji Yakusho)
Tamiyo Kusakari Tamiyo Kusakari ... Mai Kishikawa
Naoto Takenaka ... Tomio Aoki
Eri Watanabe Eri Watanabe ... Toyoko Takahashi (as Eriko Watanabe)
Yu Tokui Yu Tokui ... Tokichi Hattori
Hiromasa Taguchi Hiromasa Taguchi ... Masahiro Tanaka
Reiko Kusamura Reiko Kusamura ... Tamako Tamura (as Raiko Kusamura)
Hideko Hara Hideko Hara ... Masako Sugiyama
Hiroshi Miyasaka Hiroshi Miyasaka ... Macho
Kunihiko Ida Kunihiko Ida ... Teiji Kaneko
Amie Toujou Amie Toujou ... Hisako Honda
Ayano Nakamura Ayano Nakamura ... Chikage Sugiyama
Katsunari Mineno Katsunari Mineno ... Keiri-kachô
Tomiko Ishii Tomiko Ishii ... Haruko Haraguchi
Maki Kawamura Maki Kawamura ... Eiko Miyoshi
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Storyline

Shohei Sugiyama has attained all that he has wanted in life. But he is still depressed and unhappy. One day, he gathers up the courage to sign up for dancing lessons. He hopes they will rid his depression and help him get his life back together. Written by Robert Krzanowski <stonedpsycho@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He's an overworked accountant. She's an accomplished dancer. Passion is about to find two unlikely partners.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Music | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese

Release Date:

11 July 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Shall We Dance? See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$9,499,091

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$9,499,091
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (USA) (cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the first scene, a man's shoe in close-up plunges into a black pool in the street. This symbolizes the world renowned Ballroom Dancing Competition in Blackpool, England, referenced later in the film. See more »

Quotes

Tamako Tamura: Dance is more than the steps. Feel the music and dance for sheer joy.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Different prologue: In the beginning of the Japanese version, a voice-over introduces the history and meaning of ballroom dancing in European culture and explains "enjoyed by people of all ages, it is a healthy diversion". The prologue of the US release explains the reserved mannerisms of Japanese culture and that ballroom dancing is considered something like a scandalous pasttime there. See more »

Connections

Remade as Shall We Dance (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Save the Last Dance for Me
Written by Mort Shuman and Doc Pomus
Performed by The Drifters
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Definitely a must see...
18 October 2004 | by jon_shimamotoSee all my reviews

Okay. As you can see this is one of my favorite if not favorite films. This is a character drama which is absolutely hilarious. The main character is a business man who is stuck in a "same thing, different day" mentality. He sees a woman looking melancholy out a window of a dance studio from his train everyday and wonders about her and decides to find out more about her. He decides to join the dance class only to find out she is not the instructor. From there he bonds with four other dancers and learns to enjoy dancing as well as finding out about the mysterious woman.

There is no gratuitous (or any) sex involved, just how a small group of people learn how friendships are formed and developed.

This film was remade with Richard Gere and Jennifer Lopez and the new one while appealing is nowhere as enjoyable as the original. The movie never made it big in America because it was not eligible for the Oscars since it was broadcast on television in Japan (movies cannot be released on TV or they are disqualified for Oscar nominations). It did win numerous awards in Japan for best film, cast, director etc for their "Oscar" awards.


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