Tagline: Step out of the ordinary.
Genre: Drama, Romance, Comedy
Director: Peter Chelsom
Cast: Richard Gere, Jennifer Lopez, Susan Sarandon, Stanley Tucci, Lisa Ann Walter, Anita Gillette, Bobby Cannavale, Omar Benson Miller, Tamara Hope, Stark Sands, Richard Jenkins, Nick Cannon, Sarah Lafleur, Onalee Ames, Diana Salvatore, Daphne Korol, David Sparrow, Katya Virshilas, Chantelle Leonardo, Candace Smith, Sandra Caldwell, Mairi Babb, Ann Margaret Clements, Karina Smirnoff, Deborah Yates, Mýa, Holly Johnson, Geri Hall, Kim Kindrick, Ashley Carruthers, Susie Langtry, Lisa Durupt, Rebecca Frohlinger, Charlotte Jorgensen, Sarah Murphy-Dyson, Melissa Panton, Christine Thibault, Karen Musey, Lorrie Papadopoulos, Ja Rule
Runtime: 107Plot: Upon first sight of a beautiful instructor, a bored and overworked estate lawyer signs up for ballroom dancing lessons.
If you enjoyed the original, you will probably enjoy the remake. Well, that might not be true. It's very difficult for a remake to live up to its predecessor. Some people may think Gere and/or Lopez are horrible choices. It doesn't hurt that both of them already have dancing experience. We both thought this version was livelier. Every actor was enjoyable; there were no boring characters. Although my wife doesn't really care for Richard Gere as an actor, she felt he was fine in the role of a working man bored with his life, including his job and his family. Jennifer Lopez was just fine as the lonely and frustrated dance teacher who gets her own lesson she won't forget. Of course, the supporting actors sometimes upstage everyone else. Stanley Tucci always manages to turn his portrayals into gold no matter how the movie is. Lisa Ann Walter is hilarious as a Bette Midler-type diva (sorry, Bette, she just reminded us of you in your 80s films). Susan Sarandon is low-key as the worried wife who thinks her husband is having an affair, but has the best dialogue in the film regarding what marriage really is (you married couples will look at each other and nudge-nudge-wink-wink each other). Bobby Canavale and Omar Miller shine as Gere's fellow dancing students. Anita Gillette has a nice turn as Miss Mitzi, the owner of the studio. Richard Jenkins and Nick Cannon are fine as two private investigators.
Director Peter Chelsom doesn't go for the flash that could have been done with a movie including dancing. However, the dancing scenes are shot very well, never losing the focus of what's going on on the dance floor.
If you haven't seen the original and have only seen the previews, you don't have to enjoy ballroom dancing (or any dancing) to enjoy the movie. I read an advanced review on the 'net elsewhere and the reviewer said he hated ballroom dancing, so he already had a bias watching the movie. If this is like you, then you probably won't enjoy the movie. There are lots of dancing scenes (and not all of the ballroom type) and they are all enjoyable.
This movie is simply a crowdpleaser. It's probably not going to get any awards or nominations but it's a good time at the movies. The underlying theme is to do something with your life that you and your family will enjoy. Basically, it made us feel nice and warm inside.
The 1997 movie is supposed to come out on DVD on October 12 but was postponed to February, according to Buena Vista Home Entertainment. See both versions if you have the chance.