Saturday, October 15, 2011

Let's Give The Boy A Hand (Movie Thoughts: Footloose 2.0)

Now talk about getting old. I still remember when I saw the first "Footloose" in 1984. And I still remember when I saw "Footlose" on Broadway, the show which was based on the movie. Today I went full circle, by seeing the remake of the movie. The one thing I asked myself, was a remake of this movie really necessary? The original just came out on Blu-Ray, and truth be told, I wasn't really that fond of it, though I remember crushing on Kevin Bacon then. I was ready to be underwhelmed by the movie, but I was still curious. Well, guess what? I like this version a lot, and in a lot of ways prefer it to the original. I thought the best thing about it was Kenny Wormald. Playing the James Dean type, he succeeds on a lot of levels, and it is a joy to see him dance. I guess casting a real dancer in the role makes a difference since dancing is such a major plot point in the story. In that scene where the character of Ren lets his steam out by dancing up a storm, Kevin Bacon's version was almost embarrassing because it looked so fake and you could tell a real dancer was doing it for him. In Wormald's case, you can see him give his blood, sweat and gusto to the routine. I wish I liked Julianne Hough more, though. Yes, she is cute in a sexy Jen Aniston kind of way, but something about her just bugs me. Miles Teller, who played the kid in Nicole Kidman's "Rabbit Hole" takes over the goofy sidekick part from Chris Penn, and he is great fun in here, at times attempting to steal the movie from Wormald. This version is very faithful to the original, with subtle updates that worked for the film. I was reading at one point that the director wanted a "darker" version of the movie, but I didn't really think that was the case here. I hope Wormald goes on to bigger and better things that would showcase his enormous dancing talent. he made me want to cut loose as I was leaving the movie house.

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