Sunday, 17 March 2013

Do you wanna dance? Or do you wanna dance?

Dancing. There is nothing quite like it. It can be a celebration of being alive and being in love, or it can be a chance to touch and talk to somebody you otherwise are not able to see, or even allowed to talk to. There are many great dance numbers in film history, I could devote the rest of the year with examples. I am not going to do that, but here at least are some favourite sequences.

Let's begin with a lesson from Gene Kelly, teaching Jerry to dance in Anchors Aweigh (1945):

We move quickly from Kelly's lessons to John Travolta going solo in Saturday Night Fever (1977).

Here is a less sincere scene, from Airplane (1978), with the music from Saturday Night Fever:

Next is a regimental dance from Fort Apache (1948), with Henry Fonda as a stiff dancer.

Nobody is stiff here when Mohammed Rafi sings Jan Pehechan Ho in Gumnamn (1965):

The peasant dance sequence from Sunrise (1927) works better as part of the whole film, but here it is any way. They are new in the big city, not used to its ways, and he does not want to be reminded that he is a peasant. But he surrenders. With George O'Brien and Janet Gaynor.

Here there is no shame, just wordless grace. Cyd Charisse and Fred Astaire in The Band Wagon (1953).

Now more black and white, yet a more recent film, Sally Potter's The Tango Lesson (1997).
Pablo Verón dancing his way through cooking.

It is not unusual for there to be dancing in Patrice Leconte's films. Here Jean Rochefort dances, to a Pakistani song, in The Hairdresser's Husband (1990).

More French dancing, here in Bande à part (1964):

Back to colour and Fred Astaire, this time a scene from Royal Wedding (1951). He is not letting the laws of physics get in the way of a good number. Some feeling.

Finally, the full ballet of the Red Shoes from The Red Shoes (1948). It does not get any better than this.

1 comment:

  1. I'm glad you included Fred Astaire, I can't get enough of watching his dance moves!

    The Gumnamn dance should be the next gangman-dance! :)