Thursday, April 02, 2009

Dance, Fools, Dance

(I'm feeling the need for rapid vigorous musical movement today). What's your favorite dance number from a movie?


Alex Constantin said...

it was a teenage wedding,
and the old folks wished them well
You could see that Pierre
did truly love the madmoiselle

or whatever the spelling is. :D


Runs Like A Gay said...

The barn raising in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.

Inventive choreography, superb dancing and it moves the plot, too.

Robert said...

Moses supposes his toeses are roses
But Moses supposes erroneously

Moses he knowses his toeses aren't roses
As Moses supposes his toeses to be!

Lorenzo said...

The Girl Hunt Ballet from The band wagon!

STEPHANE said...

No contest. The ballet sequence in An American in Paris. Okay. Also "A Pretty Girl is like a Melody" in The Great Ziegfeld.

Matt said...

"Once a Year Day", from Pajama Game

Noecito said...

The Bend and Snap!!!!

Emily said...

"Dhoom Machale" from the Bollywood movie Dhoom.

CrazyCris said...

Good morning,
Good morning!
We've danced the whole night through.
Good morning
Good morning

Debbie Reynolds with two clowns, lots of fun!!!

Anonymous said...

America from West Side Story

cal roth said...

1 Dancing in the Dark, the wordless and breathtaking number in which Fred Astaire & Cyd Charisse fall in love. The Bandwagon.
2 Smoke Gets in Your Eyes, wordless number in which supporting players Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers steal the show from Irene Dunne. Roberta
3 I'm Old Fashioned, the lightest moment Rita Hayworth ever played in a movie. Her partner: Fred Astaire. The movie: You Were Never Lovelier.

Musicals are all about Fred Astaire, king of kings.

Ok, just to give you a non-Astaire number: any scene from the best musical ever, Gene Kelly-starred The Young Girls of Rochefort. Jonathan Rosenbaum agrees with me.

Peter Nellhaus said...

"The Madison", in Godard's Band of Outsiders.

Katey said...

Another vote for Moses Supposes, but only because Make 'Em Laugh is more physical comedy than dancing.

Deborah said...

Too many!

Singin' in the Rain, title song, probably as perfectly joyous as dance gets. Creates the absolute illusion that any of us could do it if we were in love in the rain.

I am enormously fond of Isn't It a Lovely Day (to Get Caught in the Rain)? from Top Hat because of its beautiful simplicity. Stripped down set, stripped down costumes, a very simple song, just lovely, lovely, lovely.

And I have to nod to the extraordinary dance with a newspaper from Summer Stock. Talk about simple perfection! This is the dance that made my son a dancer. Literally; he was transfixed by it and was a tap student as soon as the next round of classes started.

adelutza said...

Not sure if the movie qualifies as a musical but the "factory dance" from "Dancer In The Dark" is on of the most inventive dancing/singing scenes I've ever seen - and it has Bjork AND Catherine Deneuve in it at the same time.

D said...

This won't hold up against the classics here, but I'm currently kind of obsessed with "I want to live in a house" from the Aussie 80s movie "Starstruck", especially if you're looking for vigorous. Great use of framing, editing, and confined everyday settings.

E Dot said...

That's hilarious, I wrote a blog completely devoted to dance numbers. It was one of the toughest top fives Ii ever had to do... ;)

jjimmy said...

travolta & uma.

Christine said...

Nicholas Brothers in "Flying Down to Rio." I almost killed myself as a kid trying to do a tap-dancing back flip off the side of the house.

Murtada said...

footloose, footloose

also good keving bacon and eric mccormack on will & grace

Catherine said...

"Everything Old Is New Again" in All That Jazz.

What's that? Oh, don't mind me. I'm just on the floor. Dead. Because that dance scene is so touching, so technical, so funny, so brilliant.

Paul Outlaw said...

- anything Nicholas Brothers

- "You're All the World to Me" from Royal Wedding, Astaire dances on the walls and ceiling

- "Let's Face the Music and Dance" from Follow the Fleet, Fred & Ginger magic

- White Boys/Black Boys" from Hair, not so much for the choreography, but the movement of it

- "Let's Misbehave" from Pennies from Heaven, Christopher Walken dances the pants off of Bernadette Peters, literally

Kim said...

It is kind of hard to beat the joyous-ness that is "America" from West Side Story. Unless it is "Cool" from the same movie...

As for Modern Movies, I am a big fan of "El Tango de Roxanne" from Moulin Rouge, esp if you watch the unedited choreography on the DVD.

And the "Cell Block Tango" in Chicago is pretty top notch too.

CanadianKen said...

So many choices! But off the top of my head I'd cite:

BY A WATERFALL("Footlight Parade")
("Gold-diggers of 1935)

three numbers from the 90's featuring the devastating Akshaye Khanna
BHAM BHAM BHOLE ("Himalayputra")
with star and sequence both rising to a pitch of pretty convincing frenzy
("Doli Saja Ke Rakhna')
this number's a Thousand and One Nights fairytale come to life; the kind of thing one hoped Vincente Minnelli could've done (and didn't) with "Kismet"
ISHQ BINA ("Taal") Akshaye & Aishwarya Rai shimmer as they fall in love to one of A.R.Rahman's most beautiful melodies.

with Ginger:
"Follow the Fleet"
with Lucille Bremer
(both from "Ziegfeld Follies")

a sequence which he conceived and directed but didn't appear in - the exuberant swirl of PUT ON YOUR SUNDAY CLOTHES from "Hello Dolly"

I'm stopping there. But all day I expect to be remembering others I could've included.

Rob said...


Anonymous said...

Closing credits of The Jerk or Pennies From Heaven

Catherine said...

While I've enjoyed looking through everyone's selections, watching the videos on YouTube and marvelling at all that tap-dancing, ballet scenes, tango-numbers and Godard homages, I think we've all forgotten a really important, influential, technically-complex-yet-life-affirming little number: that time everyone ran, in Mamma Mia!.

Alex said...

I was thinking about saying the last scene of Slumdog Millionaire...just kidding! ;)

My two favorites are actually both Fosse numbers.

The first is Mein Herr from Cabaret.

The sencond is There Will be Some Changes Made from All that Jazz.

Then again, maybe it's just me, because I have an unhealthy love for both those movies :)

Matt said...

This dance (with Bob Fosse and Tommy Rall) from "My Sister Eileen"

Wayne B. said...

Rob, nice pick! One of my faves too. I'll say the "Hand Jive" from GREASE. The entire National Bandstand sequence is classis.

Went to CHICAGO in theatres and was blown away by the "Cell Block Tango" number with the Six Merry Murderesses.

Walter L. Hollmann said...

the final sequence with Goldie Hawn in Everyone Says I Love You. Though the dancers that open up for Barbara Jean at the Opryland riverboat in Nashville are certainly awesome too.

Dimi said...

Um, does Mr. Blonde's ear splitting routine in Reservoir Dogs count? Because that's the only thing I could think of.

But perhaps Gene Kelly would be a more suitable answer. Yes, anything he does is quite good.

Reel Whore said...

40 Year-Old Virgin, the Age of Aquarius

Garen said...

Waterloo from Muriel's wedding. I want to know that dance number.

Kamila said...

The opening number of "West Side Story".

Glendon said...

The disco scene of Boogie Nights

goatdog said...

The Nicholas Brothers in Stormy Weather (1943):


richard said...

Where do i begin (rhetorical question, not the song)? a few of my favorites in no particular order:

- Golden Afternoon from Alice in Wonderland
- Bye Bye Love from All That Jazz
- If I Had Words from Babe (the Farmer Hogget dance)
- Footloose from Footloose
- Mein Herr from Cabaret
- Nowadays/Hot Honey Rag from Chicago
- New York, New York from New York, New York
- I'm Tired from Blazing Saddles
- More from Dick Tracy
- Prince Ali from Aladdin
- That's How You Know from Enchanted
- Happiness Hotel from The Great Muppet Caper
- La Resistance from South Park the Movie
- Don't Rain on My Parade from Funny Girl

It's Cold Outside said...

The fifteen minute ballet from "THE RED SHOES", especially the moment she points upward during the "darkness gathering" scene. Followed by the "Cool" number from "West Side Story".

cal roth said...

Ok, I didn't mention Bob Fosse. He's too energetic for my tastes - I'm a Fred Astaire guy - but Steam Heat in Pajama Game can't be more brilliant.

Christine said...

Good to see so much Nicholas Brothers love her. How they are not as famous as Astaire and Kelly is beyond me. The Stormy Weather aggressive splits moves always seems as if it must really hurt, however impressive it may be.

John said...

Billy's angry dance in front of his father in Billy Elliot. The passion bursting out of that kid is one of my favorite scenes in movies.

Mike E. said...

"I Can't Do It Alone" - Catherine Zeta-Jones in 'Chicago'.

She's so physical, and desperate, and's great.

Ryan said...

Practically any number from MOULIN ROUGE!...

Also, a major fan of "Heaven's Light / Hellfire" from Disney's THE HUCKBACK OF NOTRE DAME- of of my all time favorite animated sequences ever!

Carl said...

Way late to this party. Just as well, since my taste in musicals is the poster child for questionable.

My favorite may already be listed in the comments above...if not, then shame on the folks who named so many numbers from "All That Jazz" and did not name the tryout scene, done to "On Broadway".

Runners up (tie) are either the workout scene at the beginning of, or the tryout scene at the end of, "Flashdance".

Told 'ya.