Sunday, August 8, 2010

Reality Quest

Saw Step Up 3 in 3D yesterday. Movies like this make teaching courses in dance a total joy. The acting may be pretty awful, but the film acknowledges the reasons why people dance, the sacrifices they are willing to make and the sense of belonging that they acquire.

It comes as close as I have seen to simulating the feeling of watching dance without a screen separating performer and observer, and it steers clear of the sexually aggressive tone of prior movies like You Got Served (check out its opening scene here).

It creates the possibility for students to come into a class like Dance Appreciation curious about parkour, freerunning, capoeira, the power moves of b-boys, popping and locking - all of which are represented in the film. In one scene where water is spilled on the dance-floor, the 3D technology intensifies the impact, making me wonder how many people in the movie theater know this has been done by artists like Pilobolus (in Day Two) and Dave St. Pierre (in Un peu de tendresse bordel de merde!) - and the effect is even cooler when it is seen live?

My question is: do movies that replicate the experience of seeing dance without a screen encourage people to buy a ticket and see dance in a theater or at a dance-battle, to participate in this unique experience?

Then again, there is a way to enjoy dance on screen without it being turned into a competition or spectacle: The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers, a web series directed by the same man who directed Step Up 3 Jon M. Chu.

1 comment:

  1. The more I hear about Jon M. Chu and see his presence on the Web, the more excited I get to see Step Up 3D and LXD! Thanks for your review.