Dance with Me (1998) Poster

(1998)

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It's hard to find talent.....
mhorn-616 November 2004
I saw the movie "DANCE WITH ME" because there was nothing else interesting on. If I had known it would be so entertaining I would have watched it years ago. Like "STRICTLY BALLROOM", it is a beautiful mix of music, fun and dancing. This movies shows an intensity and passion between 2 people that is lacking in most modern movies. Most movies never develop a love story.....rather they jump into some steamy sexual situation. What happened to leaving things to our imagination....Happily Ever After!!! Don't get me wrong, the script was lacking at times, but the performers made up for it with energy, and realism. Who can't relate to being torn between something you love and something you want. Vanessa L. Williams is outstanding. If she had starred in "MOULIN ROUGE", I may have been able to watch the whole thing. Vanessa is one of the few MULTI-TALENTED PERFORMERS(singer, actress and NOW dancer)overlooked by Hollywood. Few women can do it all. Not since the likes of Judy Garland, Audrey Hepburn, and Ginger Rodgers. "DANCE WITH ME" is worth watching.
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8/10
Exquisite display of color, movement and emotion
s_rutland6 January 2005
This movie is very good eye candy. The music and the dancing pulls you into the movie. Sometimes I just forgot that they were telling a story because almost in every scene there was movement, feeling and attention in the dance choreography. It was a wonderful display of dancing and choice in music. Some may not like the movie because it lacks a strong storyline, but there are no new ideas. We all know what hidden behind door number 1, 2 and 3. Nonetheless, it is not that the movie doesn't stray into the unknown; it is that the movie has attraction, heat, and passion especially with the chemistry between Chayanne and Vanessa. I even like the music video that complements the movie. Chayanne has done a great job in his first English role and better yet he has the moves to back it up. Although Vanessa is heard in the movie speaking extremely poor Spanish, she did a wonderful job in the Spanish version of "You are my home" it was great!
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A Fun Film
gfs543-26 May 2001
This is one of my all-time favorites, yet I wouldn't call the film great in the usual sense. It doesn't have an intricate plot, and some will be frustrated at the limited interaction between the stars, Williams and Chayanne. (I wasn't but that's me.) The film's spirit - with its dancing and Latin music - makes it something special. The acting was superb, and there was a nice mix of characters. But the dancing really steals the show - it makes you want to get up and join them.

I recommend this to anyone who enjoys a mix of light drama and dancing.
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8/10
A Pleasant Surprise
chirho332 August 2005
I saw this film by chance on cable TV. I was captivated from the start and stayed with it to the end (a major feat for a remote "trigger finger" like me). I read the cable synopsis and thought, "Uh oh! Cliché city!" But, to my surprise, this film was not clichéd and the film was like a breath of fresh air. The performances, for the most part, were true and honest. Chayenne (as Rafael, a Cuban émigré) is charming and acts well in his English-language film debut. Vanessa Williams is stunning, as always. And the music! Picante! The dance sequences are excellent and Chayenne is an excellent dancer as is Vanessa. Chayenne has a soulful demeanor and with his eyes and subtle facial inflections, he made me feel his loneliness as a stranger in a new land. Many times, I thought the film would sink into gooey sentimentality, but again, to my surprise, it rose above such obviousness. The best scene in the film is when Chayenne is caught in a lawn sprinkler system that turns on unexpectedly. With great charm and wit, Chayenne does an excellent homage to Gene Kelly, but with his own style and grace. A wonderful and funny scene. I recommend this film if you want to hear some great Latin music, see some great dancing and be captivated by Chayenne and the beautiful Vanessa Williams. By the way, Kris Kristofferson is very good as the man who gives Rafael (Chayenne) a place to live upon arriving from Cuba and who plays a key role in Rafael's adjustment to a new life in America.
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10/10
Superb film
design4design200227 December 2004
as someone who enjoys dancing and anything Latin i have to say i loved this film. Maybe its because I'm female and can be a bit soppy at times but i loved Rafael and Ruby, and must say I found Rafael Infante very sexy. I thought the dancing was very interesting and had me watching with anticipation and I enjoyed every minute. I'm also a fan of ally McBeal so enjoyed watching Jane Krakowski as Patricia too. which was followed by a very amusing little dance by an older lady whose name i can't remember but who said "I wanna do that too". I loved the outfits and wow Rubys dress in her final dance was amazing! Just hoping it is going to come out on DVD in the UK now!
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10/10
Fun, sexy, great dancing and music is amazing!
suavehermanita27 May 2002
A must see! Chayanne (Rafael) is incredibly sexy and Vanessa Williams (Ruby)looks amazing. Chayanne from Puerto Rico, who has been a singer for years, has proven himself multi-talented. Not only can he sing, he can DEFINATLY dance, and act too! Vanessa is one of those women you love to hate - especially in this movie. Utterly Gorgeous, she dances like a dream and in the duet with Chayanne "You are my home" she even sings great too! The Chemistry between the two leads is electrifying, especially evident in the Dance championships and in the club scenes. Well casted. Ruby's young son is irresistable and Bea is the grandma everyone wants. The music is so incredibly catchy - I have the soundtrack, which also contains a couple of songs not in the movie which should be, but unfortunatly leaves out some that are in the movie that should be on the CD as well! There is also "Dance with Me 2" which contains songs not in the movie but in the syle of. Features Chayanne and Vanessa Williams, Gloria Estefan, Sergio Mendes, DLG (who have a role in the movie performing at the club Rafael and Ruby go to), Ruban Blades and more! I think I must have seen this movie over 25 times and I never get sick of it! I've almost memorised the script! Would have been nice to embelish the father-son relationship of Rafael and John (Kris Kristofferson), but this may well have detracted from the dance scenes. And I definatly would have liked more on the romance between the two leads...! I hope Chayanne does more movies as he has a talent for it and I'm hanging out for more perving! Oh, and more dancing too!
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JAW DROPPER dance scenes!!!
salsa__baby12 August 2004
This movie was one of the greatest Latin dance movies. I myself dance and i love the way it focused around the fact of REAL Latin DANCING (afro-cuban) and ballroom Latin dancing.

The only thing that i could picture wrong with the film was not enough dancing, but i tell you, when the dance scenes hit the screen they REALLY hit it :). The great choreography, and great music, couldn't stop smiling.

Some low points of the film was with father son chats, which just seem like they were there to fill in time.

The cast was a great choice. Chayanne (Latin singer) who moves are unique and fun and that makes u smile. And Vanessa L. Williams, was trained to the extent of a real ballroom champion.

With all of this it included comedy, many funny lines which make it memorable, and a lasting feeling that will make you want to take up salsa dancing :)

If you enjoy this movie, rent out dirty dancing havana nights, forbidden dance lambada, salsa motion picture (oldie but a goodie)
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10/10
It is such a relief to be able to see a movie that leaves you
cstltn4 December 1999
I think this was a wonderful, refreshing movie. The dancing was suburb!

Chayanne, the new Latin sensation, was absolutely wonderful. He fills the screen with such charm and charisma......he steals the movie! Vanessa Williams was exciting and beautiful. Both Chayanne and Vanessa made the most electrifying couple! The rest of the cast added just the right touch to complete this ensemble. The dancing and music was well worth just seeing the movie!
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9/10
Excellent dance film a throwback
SKG-215 February 1999
The old dance films of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, and Gene Kelly, may have been a technical marvel, but they also understood that dancing was a form of communication, of things left unsaid. This film fits right in with that tradition, though of course it's using more modern dances, but I think Astaire would look at the chemistry between Chayanne and Williams when they're dancing, and approve. You can tell director Randa Haines is a fan of the dancing the way she lovingly photographs it, and gives all the dancers a chance to shine, especially during the long dance scene at the club. She's also the first director who really gives Williams a chance to cut loose and show her talent. I don't know much about Chayanne, but he's good too.

So the plot isn't much. Who watches musicals just for the plot? And actually, I liked how they handled certain aspects, like the dance competition and how Chayanne and Williams resolve their feelings for one another without even dancing together. The only real criticism I have is the movie is a little too long, but that's only a quibble.
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10/10
If you loved Dirty Dancing you'll love this one too!
giarcima21 July 2001
This movie instantly became a favorite of mine, it's full of warmth and charm, the characters are real and enchanting, and Chayanne (Rafael) is absolutely captivating! I could hardly take my eyes off of him during the entire movie. Watch for the scene where he dances in the sprinklers, he's absolutely charming! (I could go on for days about him but I'll spare you). Vanessa Williams (Ruby) is every bit his equal though, not only is she breathtakingly beautiful, but her dancing is some of the best I've ever seen in any movie. (I still can't figure out how she dances so well in those shoes!) As for the supporting cast, Joan Plowright (Bea) can even steal a scene from Chayanne! She's adorable as one of the older, but very enthusiastic dance students. Her second performance in the Las Vegas competition is another one of my favorite scenes. Do not miss this movie! (Now, where do I sign up for Chayanne's fan club???)
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10/10
One of the best dance movies!
victek-15 April 2008
Dance With Me is excellent because both Chayanne and Venessa Williams are a "triple threat", i.e. they can dance, act and sing too, which is rare these days. Dance movies are almost always weak in either acting or dancing, and the stories are often just filler to pass time and loosely connect the dance scenes. Not so with DWM, where the chemistry of the characters is so strong it makes the story believable even though it is predictable. The production values are also very high - footage of a real professional ballroom dancing competition is seamlessly integrated, and the film is infused with great Latin music from beginning to end. And Venessa and Chayanne DO sing one of the songs in the soundtrack, all of which sounds terrific in 5.1 surround on the DVD. If you like dance films you owe it to yourself to see DWM.
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10/10
Why is this film so underrated?
mathmaniac30 June 2007
I recall seeing 'Saturday Night Fever' (talk about your clichéd movie plots!) and leaving the theater with nothing but the dancing of John Travolta on my mind. That movie was a huge hit, the music was terrific, and to my mind, it made John Travolta a star.

This movie gives me the same feeling. Why was it not a similar hit?

I've watched it scores of times. Chayanne and Vanessa Williams have credible chemistry on-screen and the plot, although kind of standard, is interesting enough to carry the action.

In particular, I always come back to this movie to watch the dancing. It is simply spectacular. The scene where Chayanne and Vanessa Williams' characters reach a kind of truce because they love to dance and like each other - so they go on a second date - is simply amazing. They arrive at the nightclub where they had a failed first date and the crowd parts to let them in to a kind of Latin musical dance fest where the music doesn't seem to stop long enough for anyone to sit down and catch a breath. They are immediately caught up in the swirl and almost as soon, they part and go off in different directions, passing each other, picking up different partners and having a wonderful time to the fantastic music. The scene is not about them, it's about the crowd and the sheer joy of dancing to Latin music - which in this case is not sultry and sensuous one-to-one dancing but an all-out bacchanalia of multiple partners and a pounding beat. Wonderful, wonderful!

Everything about this film feels so natural and relaxed. It's like a breath of fresh air. It's not fair to compare it to 'Strictly Ballroom' directed by Baz Luhrmann. I love his movies but I appreciate them for being grand operatic extravaganzas. 'Strictly Ballroom' was certainly that.

'Dance with Me' will always be one of my favorite movies and now I've got a crush on Chayanne that just won't quit.
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10/10
Not just a woman's movie, but good for romantic fellers too
malcotoro19 September 2006
I simply love this movie, I have the DVD and I am watching it again. I love it... Vannessa Williams is a very good actress in this film, I have not seen a lot of her work but she shines, and she is visually stunning, beautiful and I really appreciate the gradual warming of her relationship with Chayanne, he is so handsome and charming. Who is this guy Chayanne? So very personable and charismatic, I want to know where he came from... He is great and a surefire popular man for the ladies to swoon over... There is definite chemistry between them, Vanessa and Chayanne. Joan Plowright is one of the dance team, married in real life to Laurence Olivier and a remarkable actress, so the fact that she chose to be in this movie is a point to note. Kris Kristofferson also gives a fine performance as the long lost father we come to know about. The dancing in the movie is superb, there is a lot of dancing...dancing lessons in a dance studio, but the storyline progresses well even if you don't like dancing. After watching this, you will. Oh, it's just great, I am already feeling the glow from watching it, you will too ...have to get back to the screen to see more of this underrated little movie Malcolm in Toronto Jan 2013
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8/10
chemistry makes a simple plot spring to life!
sharkey0008 December 2001
Refreshingly cute! Though I didn't particularly find Chayanne to be anything special when I caught a glimpse of this movie on tv the first time round (half the movie had finished by then) I changed my mind when I managed to sit down and actually watch the movie from start to finish. Simple plot, simple dialogue, yet executed to perfection. All I can say is I hope Vanessa L. Williams and Chayanne do another movie together because not only did they dance well together, the chemistry between the 2 was perfect. It brought to mind the fact that there are so few couples nowadays that work well together. Beyond your Meg Ryan/Tom Hanks; Julia Roberts/Richard Gere, can you name any that have had great chemistry???? The story is cute, centres around a young Cuban who comes to Texas to confront his dad (who owns a dance studio). He falls in love with one of the dance instructors who works there, yet she's more interested in winning the world championship with her ex boyfriend. Go rent it and watch it on a Friday night!
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10/10
Fun, Romantic, Great Dancing, a Pleasure to Discover Chayanne!
dancing-74 February 2007
What a pleasure to discover an internationally acclaimed Latino performer, Chayanne, totally by accident! While DWM has flaws that have been pointed out in other reviews, (I voted "10" for the experience) for me it was primarily a time of joy and delight as I experienced an honest, exciting performance by a young man I might not have otherwise known. Chayanne's sincerity, passion for life, and ability to respond truthfully to his cast mates were evident throughout the film (not so hard on the eyes either!). Since viewing DWM, I've found his music (dozens of gold and platinum albums in the international community) and his fans (chayanne.net, casachayanne.com and others) and my life is richer for the discovery. Take a chance and have a ball!
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10/10
Comment on Movie
juanclar17 July 2006
I feel sorry for those who are not of Latin Decent and comment about this film. If you are not a romantic, have no passion, no deep feelings, sentiment, soul, compassion, then without question, you can not recognize the greatness of this film. It set a standard for all similar movies, in Japan, Shall we dance, another in Korea, in the US, Shall we dance with Richard Gere and Jlow, and many other school competitive dance movies. Please do not think of or discuss, Ginger Rogers or Fred Astere, that was a totally different era.

If you were from Cuba and you reached out with your heart, soul and mind, to recall those special places, you too would feel the loneliness for what you left behind. Have you ever heard, "Oh my, it's good to be home!" Venessa and Chayanne were electrifying! When they danced, the music, and their quiet passion, the heat in there looks and touch seemed unbelievably real! As for all the other dancers, they made a celebration of it and all had fun.

The music makes you want to dance in your seat. The last dance scene should have deeply touched all. Although dancing with some one, in her being Vanessa was dancing with Chayanne. Freedom to be creative was an understatement, it shined through. What a pleasant surprise and joy to see Joan Plowright and Chayanne do their dance scene, terrific touch to the movie.

I applaud the entire staff, crew, actors and Director for giving me the pleasure of this movie! I consider it a classic, a favorite, and trend setter! Back then you did not know the impact of your work today. To all of you, thank you! Sincerely, Juan Ramon Clar
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8/10
Celebrates the joy of dance
MartianOctocretr513 June 2006
Dance With Me is that fun kind of film you can get the old tape out and revisit every once in a while, and it remains fresh even after multiple viewings. The characters are likable, the cast clicks well together, the music is a terrific assortment of different styles, and plenty of well-choreographed dance routines are featured. All of these blend well to make for a feel-good movie.

Although the focus of the movie is simply to celebrate the joy of dance itself, three parallel plots are introduced that give the story cohesiveness, as well as somewhere to go. A young Cuban man (Chayanne) travels to Texas to meet the father he has never known (Kris Kristofferson), who runs a dance studio, and romances one of the teachers who works at the studio (Vanessa Williams), while everyone at the studio prepares for a dance competition in Vegas.

These three elements are mixed well, thanks to a fine ensemble cast. Chayanne has a boyish, friendly charm that is immediately disarming. Williams and Kristofferson, two actors I've never been particularly fond of, turn in great performances and won me over as a new fan. They have splendid screen chemistry with Chayanne, and the multiple plots are developed well because of this. The supporting cast have their share of great moments too, and provide plenty of comic relief.

The wide variety of music and dance styles throughout the movie are utilized well. Look for excellent choreography, particularly in the nightclub sequence where Williams gets spun, turned, and whirled by about a hundred other dancers. The dance competition finale is staged brilliantly, showing everything from ballet to sizzling salsa in an exhilarating fashion.

Overall, an enjoyable movie, in the spirit of the old MGM musicals, where the only thing that's important is to have some pleasant, escapist fun.
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oh yeah with the chemistry
she_mal1 August 2005
just wanted to say i totally agree about the chemistry. i saw it with my mom at the theater and was lost about the plot then but it didn't matter cuz there was so much going on between chayanne and vanessa williams i was totally caught up in them. i think they had just one kiss and that was so hot, it was a tease. they seemed to have a lot of fun together. the movie gets shown on cable a bit and i understand what it's about now a little too after having seen it a few times. i always think the writing will bore me and it does a little but the chemistry keeps me there. chayanne's character has a black cuban mom too, they show a quick photo of her, and the vanessa williams character cuz of her color and the fact that she's a single mom too. before they kiss, they talk about her child and how she was left pregnant and he grabs her then. still it all kind of doesn't matter cuz those two are real hot and cute together. i do hope they do something else somehow cuz i know this didn't get a lot of attention.
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10/10
Vanessa's Oscar Worthy Ruby Sinclair
tito-1321 October 1998
********** Williams performance is the rock which sustains the believability and dramatic tension of "DANCE WITH ME"s unfolding events. Her acting is drenched with Irene Papas catharsis; when she plumbs her soul at the climactic final championship dance she travels through more horizon lines on her emotional interior landscape than Keir Dullea at the end of "2001". We don't need FX to see those plateaus. Her face is a gradient seismograph of the turbulent earthquakes transforming her heart. This is an AMAZING performance. To accomplish this in the middle of an athletic dance of Olympic intensity is simply beyond the pale of any other actress on screen today. No one else could have pulled this off and Williams does it with such absolute authority it's chilling.

We have VASTLY underrated the talent of this woman and Hollywood should hang its head in shame for that.

Hollywood adapted actress rankings quickly when required to do so in the past. Sally Field went from Gidget/Flying Nun to Daughter of Stanislavski in "Sybil" overnight. Vanessa's triumph is dropping critical jaws with similarly astounded gasps:

"At last a vehicle for her PRODIGIOUS TALENT. The teaming of Chayanne and Vanessa is like a double dose of Viagra!" ------------- Time Magazine

Behind the same buzz that catapulted Jessica Lange from kitsch "Kong" to "Frances" glitters Vanessa William's similarly elevated dust in "DANCE WITH ME". She's broken through to become the Dorothy Dandridge of our generation.

Williams says she's used to proving herself with each new project:

``That's the luxury of having people doubt you, everything surprises them."
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10/10
Chayenne is worth the price of admission!
Jeannie-417 September 1998
I found the romance in this movie very moving. Chayenne has major sex appeal, and is sure to be developed as a leading man in American films. Vanessa Williams is proving she is more than just a beautiful face (which she definitely is). Chayenne uses his expressive eyes to full advantage throughout the film, but in an understated way. Hollywood, take note! This guy has real potential!
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wonderful dancing to wonderful music
RudeRuth24 November 1999
Yes, Virginia, the plot is cliched but isn't that true of most musicals? What this movie has going for it is dancing, music and stars who are beautiful, charming and talented. The dance scene in the Latin bar is worth the price of admission. If you like the Latin beat and want to watch pros dancing it, this movie is for you. It made this sedentary old broad rock her lounger.
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9/10
A Fun and Lively Time!
benajam24 December 1998
I thought that Dance With Me was fun and lively. The story was nice and engaging. I've read many reviews of this movie and I feel that they are unfair. Dance With Me was meant to be entertaining and for those that were in the theater when I was it accomplished that purpose. I enjoyed the cast, all of them, they fit the story. It was evident that some hard work went into the movie. I do feel that further development of the relationships could have been shown. A lot of what was shown after the "end" of the movie should have been kept in.
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10/10
A memorable love story a decade later
toned30639 August 2008
I cannot believe it has been ten years since the release of this film. I love it even more this day. "Dance With Me" is a love story interspersed with electrifying dance moves and sensuality that leaps off the screen. The chemistry between Vanessa Williams and Chayanne is palpable. They are a beautiful couple…and I believe they enjoyed making the film together. The energetic sound track will have you ready to jump out of your seat and start dancing…no matter where you are or if you can dance. If you have a chance to see the video on You Tube, "Refugio De Amor," do! It captures the essence of the movie and Afro-Cuban/Latin beat that will pulse through your veins even when the video and movie end.

Do not pay attention to the movie critics if you like romance, dance movies, great choreography, likable characters and memorable music. I own the DVD, movie soundtrack and am a member of the Chayanne fan club…oh, and Vanessa's too…;-)
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7/10
classic unknown Latin dance movie.
jimakros23 November 2007
The mistake with this movie is that it doesn't have some hit tune to promote it.A hit tune has made hits out of very mediocre movies.Even though both leads can sing neither of them does in this movie and i believe thats why no one has ever heard of it. Other than that its a very nice movie,with a likable plot,solid acting and dazzling dancing.This could have easily been a huge hit if only it had some catchy tune.There's plenty of Latin music in it but not any original hit.The male lead is handsome,likable and gives a solid acting performance,his dancing is OK but less impressive.There's good support from star Kristofferson and some decent character actors. I was astounded by miss William's dancing in this movie.She is incredible.Just the kind of performance one would expect from movies like Chicago but there were none there,there is plenty here,but the other movie wins an Oscar and this one is unknown.Go figure.Don't be fooled by the low rating of this movie.I have no idea who are the people who vote,if you like Latin music and dancing this is a must.
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Its definitely not as bad as the ratings
sharatgoswami25 March 2007
I don't get it. Why does this movie have so low a rating. I mean i realize its not the greatest ever, but its certainly not a 4 pointer either. It deserves at least a 7 or a 7.5 Some might even give it 8. This definitely one of those cases where the IMDb rating is certainly not correct. In my opinion.

The dancing and music are of course very good. To see Chayanne do his stuff is like magic. He shows you how the music leads him. But even the dialogs are so great, people somehow tend to miss that. A real pity. It could be better no doubt, but it certainly isn't a bad movie. So why the ridiculously low rating.
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