friday flick fix:
footloose (1984)

Image from here

Footloose (1984)
Starring Kevin Bacon | John Lithgow | Lori Singer
directed by Herbert Ross
Plot summary here.

Everybody cut, everybody cut! =D

Eighties kids are familiar with Kenny Loggin's LSS-prone song, Footloose, which was the theme to the 1984 youth-oriented film. I'm not sure which came first - did the song inspire the movie, or did the producers of the film ask Loggins to write it for the soundtrack?

I recall there was a bit of a dance craze, mostly involving kicking your feet and throwing your hands up. The getup: high-waist baston jeans and sneakers. Throw a printed button-down shirt over a tank top, roll the sleeves up real high, then tie the front instead of buttoning it. Accessorize with a bulky, angular Walkman and headphones.

Footloose happens to be one of the Hubby's childhood faves, so he couldn't resist buying it when he chanced upon it on the sale rack of the video store. I never saw it before, so seeing it now for the first ever time feels like watching a B-movie. Of course as with all classics, I had to adjust my lenses a bit.

Hanep ang fashion. Baston kung baston!

Kevin Bacon used to be cute. Not exactly gorgeous but quite attractive. I never knew he could dance like that. I wonder if he still does. It'd be almost sad if he didn't, but then again he's found his niche as a dramatic actor.

Also in that movie is young Sarah Jessica Parker, at that time fresh from her geek role in Square Pegs. Not yet the Carrie Bradshaw-ish bombshell fashionista we know her to be today, she was cast as the leading lady's supportive, less attractive friend.

It was so bizarre that the characters kept on referring to their dance music as "rock", hahaha.

And oh - I got a kick out of seeing an old-school Walkman. Those things were one of the coolest inventions at a time no one has yet even dreamed of the possibility of an MP3 player.

IMDB says a remake is in production. I'm pretty much indifferent. Another dance movie starring virtual nobodies? Another "breaking the status quo" story? Whatever.

The word footloose is so dated, it sounds like something a Quaker would say. It would be dorky to use in a movie after the year 2000. (I'm trying to think of a more current word that means footloose. Merriam-Webster defines it as having no ties; free to move about). Besides, "rock" and "dance" music are a lot more distinct these days.

On the other hand (um, my more polite hand), I can see why it appealed to the 1984 crowd and how it might possibly still tickle 2011 moviegoers. I mean, 2011 moviegoers besides the already-existing fans from a subset of Generation X.

Well, first of all it's got that overused breaking free from the status quo / standing up for what you believe sort of theme. Story lines like that work on the dreamer in everybody.

And then - combine that theme with a particular kind of hero. Or shall i say, antihero. The nice rebel type who becomes a catalyst of change in a community devoid of passion. Ren McCormack (played by Kevin Bacon) reflects that part of our personae that is just itching for change, gathering strength to stand up to our own Reverend Moores (played by John Lithgow)

Then toss in a contemporary soundtrack and a bit of choreography. Teenagers (and the young at heart) love music and energy. Even if means sitting through a scene with a dude freaking and thinking no one's watching.

As shallow and as slow-paced old movies go, Footloose bored me. I fell asleep halfway through and had to pick it up another day. I finished it just because it's a loved classic, but with all the predictables I don't think I'll be watching it again any time. It's just nice to load up on classic movies.
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