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The Company (2003)

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Ensemble drama centered around a group of ballet dancers, with a focus on one young dancer who's poised to become a principal performer.

Director:

Robert Altman

Writers:

Neve Campbell (story), Barbara Turner (story) | 1 more credit »
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Neve Campbell ... Loretta 'Ry' Ryan
Malcolm McDowell ... Alberto Antonelli
James Franco ... Josh
Barbara E. Robertson ... Harriet (as Barbara Robertson)
William Dick ... Edouard
Susie Cusack ... Susie
Marilyn Dodds Frank Marilyn Dodds Frank ... Mrs. Ryan
John Lordan John Lordan ... Mr. Ryan
Mariann Mayberry ... Stepmother
Roderick Peeples ... Stepfather
Yasen Peyankov ... Justin's Mentor
Davis C. Robertson Davis C. Robertson ... Alec - Joffrey Dancer (as Davis Robertson)
Deborah Dawn Deborah Dawn ... Deborah - Joffrey Dancer
John Gluckman John Gluckman ... John - Joffrey Dancer
David Gombert David Gombert ... Justin - Joffrey Dancer
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Storyline

An inside look at the world of ballet. With the complete cooperation of the Joffrey Ballet of Chicago, Altman follows the stories of the dancers, whose professional and personal lives grow impossibly close, as they cope with the demands of a life in the ballet. Campbell plays a gifted but conflicted company member on the verge of becoming a principal dancer at a fictional Chicago troupe, with McDowell the company's co-founder and artistic director, considered one of America's most exciting choreographers. Franco plays Campbell's boyfriend and one of the few characters not involved in the world of dance. Written by Andrea Barney <andrea808@hotmail..com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 on appeal for brief strong language, some nudity and sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Germany | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 May 2004 (Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

A Companhia See more »

Filming Locations:

Chicago, Illinois, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$93,776, 28 December 2003, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,281,585, 9 May 2004
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS (8 channels)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Malcolm McDowell character, Alberto Antonelli, is heavily based on The Robert Joffrey Ballet's longtime artistic director, Gerald ("Jerry") Arpino. Like Arpino, Antonelli is an Italian American former dancer who has gone on to run a prominent Chicago dance company (the chastising speech that Antonelli gives to an Italian-American audience while receiving an award was taken nearly verbatim from an awards speech of Arpino's). Many of Antonelli's turns of phrase in the script were taken from Arpino's speech patterns, as was his habit of watching rehearsals while sitting backwards in a white, open-backed chair that was reserved only for him. See more »

Goofs

At about 1:10 while counting during a rehearsal, Harriet skips the 6th count of 8. See more »

Quotes

Alberto Antonelli: I hate pretty!
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the closing credits begin rolling, the dancers continue to take their final bows, and the audience continues to applaud. See more »

Connections

Referenced in O Lucky Malcolm! (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Balabille des paysans et des paysannes
from "Les ruses d'amour, Op. 61"
Music by Aleksandr Glazunov (as Alexander Glazunov)
Performed by Paul Lewis
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Beautiful ballet scenes with token romance plot spliced in. 6/10.
30 June 2004 | by Ben_CheshireSee all my reviews

The ballet sequences are probably the most breathtaking we've seen in a fiction film. Altman succeeds in putting ballet in the fore, instead of characters or story. This was his intention, and on this front he gets a 8/10. However, where there are not ballet scenes, there is a story: Neve Campbell wrote it. And she seems not to have seen any other romance movie since the dawn of time. Its just the kind of romance subplot a little girl WOULD write: with soft lighting, flickering candlelight, a beautiful boy who does nothing wrong, listens to your problems, sleeps with you, and lets you get on with your dancing. He appears when it is convenient for both Neve and Bob Altman to insert a romantic scene: and just as gimmicky a brushstroke as this, is his entrance always being marked by the same song, My Funny Valentine. It was nice how they had four different versions of the song, for different moods: the upbeat poolhall number for their meeting, the romantic one for the seduction, and a more melancholy one when she's missing him. Anyone who knows this song (most of us), feel how gimmicky a device this is when it arrives again.

So far is this from the dramatic conflict between love and dancing in Powell and Pressburger's The Red Shoes that we're almost barren of any narrative drive or dramatic conflict at all. That's my main problem with The Company - nothing goes wrong. Or when it does go wrong (raining on the night of a performance), it always serves to improve the moment for the protagonists: indeed it is an incredible scene, Neve dancing a duet with a Joffret dancer. A moving, beautiful dance. But that's precicely the problem: there is no problem!

Malcolm McDowell is no good. He gets a C-. He tries, but its so obvious throughout that he knows not a jot about ballet, and he just walks around play-acting at a ballet coach from the movies, while the real Joffret coaches tell the dancers what they need to know. And his calling everyone "babies" is a clumsy attempt to create character through a catchphrase.

6/10

Beautiful ballet scenes, A+ for putting the dancing centre-stage, so to speak (as opposed to the tawdry melodrama called Centre Stage). But all we've got to go on narrative-wise is a thin-as-a-ballet-ribbon romance subplot. If this wasn't there, actually, it might have been a very successful art movie - but its gimmicky presence is so clumsy its a fault.


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