Monday, October 22, 2012

Movie Monday: Strictly Ballroom


In typical fashion, I still had no idea what movie to watch at lunchtime yesterday. But then 'Love is in the Air' came on the radio, and there was no competition.
Source

I have a perhaps slightly unnatural soft spot for this movie, because it was the first thing I ever went to see at the movies WITHOUT AN ACCOMPANYING PARENT. I was 9, and someone's mother dropped us at the cinema about ten minutes before it started, and picked us up as soon as it finished. This, I should add, was in 1992 when it was acceptable to do such things despite the lack of mobile phones. We sat in the back row and thought we were SOOOOOOOOO cool, and were the youngest people in the theatre by approximately sixty years.

ANYWAY.

Reasons why Strictly Ballroom is awesome:
1. It was Baz Luhrmann's directorial debut.
2. Paul Mercurio as Scott. This was his acting debut (he was a professional dancer), and he's pretty phenomenal.
3. The costumes. Oh my GOD, the costumes.
Seriously, you guys. Source.
4. Tara Morice. She's fantastic as Fran.
5. The dancing.
6. Bill Hunter. Almost every big name Australian film from the 90s seemed to star Bill Hunter. There's a valid reason for it - he's fantastic.
7. Scott's little sister, Kylie. She's HILARIOUS.
8. Scott's big entrance at the Pan Pacifics.
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9. Gia Carides as Scott's dance partner, Liz. You may know her better as Robin Swallows from Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me.
10. The documentary style at the beginning.
11. Barry Otto as Scott's father, Doug. He's BRILLIANT.
12. The hairstyles. OH MY GOD.
Seriously, what even is this?? Source.
13. The soundtrack. I actually have this on CD, and it's awesome.
14. The scene where Ken Railings walks into the dance studio to see Liz.
15. Training in secret on the roof.
16. The scene where Fran's dad teaches Scott to do the paso doble properly.
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17. SO. MANY. SEQUINS.
18. Doug's backstory.
19. Fran's grandmother. She's sassy as hell, even when almost all her lines are in Spanish.
20. Sonja Kruger and Todd McKenny. They're now both involved with the Australian version of Dancing With the Stars.
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21. Dancing the rumba behind the curtain at the State Championship.
22. The cinematography is BEAUTIFUL.
23. The whole thing was made for $3,000,000, and they had to fight for almost every cent of it.
24. When Doug starts applauding in the silent stadium.
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25. All the times Liz accidentally knocks Fran over or squashes her behind doors.
26. Dancing the paso doble at the Pan Pacifics. You have to see it to believe it.


Plus, the following quotes:
- "A life lived in fear is a life half-lived."
- [hissed between teeth while dancing] "You've been drinking!" "Bullshit. Bullshit!" "You bloody have!"
- "A little musicality, please!"
- "I find it hard to get the films now. It's all video, video, video."
- "If you're driving the engine, what's that in the thermos??"
- "I have to help Wayne with his bogo pogo."
- "What do I want? I'll tell you what I want! I want Ken Railings to walk in here right now, and say 'Pam Shortt's broken both her legs, and I wanna dance with YOU!'" "Pam Shortt's broken both her legs, and I wanna dance with you." "That was unexpected."
- "We had the chance, but we were scared. We walked away. We lived our lives IN FEAR!"
- "Where do you think we'd be if everyone went around making up their own steps?" "Out of a job."
- "SHOW me your paso doble!"
- "Well, of course, you can dance any steps you like. That doesn't mean you'll.......WIN."
- "Son, can I bend your ear for a tick?" "Not now, Dad!"
- "Where the man goes, the lady must follow..."
- "He doesn't CARE about winning the Pan Pacific Grand Prix???"
- "He started doing his own wild, crowd-pleasing steps. A bit like you, Scott. Not always...strictly ballroom."
- "Poor Tina. It's like dancing in a brewery."
- "You've a light in you, boy. Let it shine!"

What's your favourite dance movie?
K xx

24 comments:

  1. I have an embarrassing confession. I love this movie (not the confession) - and have seen it many many a time. And watched it when I was quite a young thing in America. WHERE I DIDN'T REALISE IT WAS AN AUSTRALIAN MOVIE.

    I just figured they talked funny.

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    1. Ahahahahahahaha, awwwwww. That's is a brilliant story.

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  2. I have been known to tell people to stop what they are doing because "it's not Federation". They almost certainly think I'm insane.

    This is a brilliant movie. Why did we stop laughing at ballroom dancing and instead, turn it into primetime TV??

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    1. RIGHT?!?!?! Also, why is REAL ballroom dancing on TV only on Christmas Day? I always want to watch it to see if the hair and the costumes are as buckets o' crazy as they are in this. But I never can, because MUST HAVE EVERY SINGLE FAMILY MEMBER OVER FOR CHRISTMAS. Harrumph...

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  3. When you said Paul Mecurio was phenomenal, did you mean he was hot? Because he was hot. As a side note he now owns a microbrewery in Woodend.
    Sigh. And now ii miss Australia!

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    Replies
    1. I didn't mean that he was hot. But that's mostly because I can't help but see him as the Paul Mercurio of TODAY, the one who hosts weird cooking shows at 5pm on a Sunday and who is overweight and balding.

      If I didn't know that 2012 Paul Mercurio existed, then YES. Hawt.

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  4. I've never seen this, but I really should. I LOVE Moulin Rouge! (Our first dance song at our wedding was "Come What May.")

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    1. YOU HAVE TO SEE IT. It's so phenomenally brilliant. And that is an awesome song for your first dance!

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  5. K, you have to go and see Mental, the new film at the movies now with Toni Collette. It's like a cross between Strictly Ballroom and Muriel's Wedding with more red-heads and swearing! I loved it! xx Char

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    1. That sounds AMAZING. Now that the last of my assignments is handed in, I might just take myself to the movies in the middle of the day!

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  6. THIS. This my favourite dance movie. I love it! I used to watch this with a friend on video when we were kids, and I bought it on DVD several years later when I was at uni and managed to get a few of my friends to fall in love with it too :) It's a firm favourite of mine.

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    1. It's my favourite dance movie too. As much as I love Centre Stage and Dirty Dancing and Singin' in the Rain? They can't hold a candle to this.

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  7. THIS MOVIE LOOKS AMAZING. I've just added it to my queue on Netflix.

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    1. I'd like to add that I watched this last night, AND IT WAS PHENOMENAL. Also, am I the only one who thought Paul Mercurio was attractive? Just me? Okay...

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    2. a) YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY!!!!!
      b) Not just you. But stay away from Googling what he looks like now. Because you'll want to cry.

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    3. That thought never occurred to me. But as soon as you tell me not to do something, I instantly want to do it. Must. Not. Google.

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  8. I haven't ever seen this movie, but I have heard of it. It sounds like a fun one. My favorite dance scene in any movie the the Thriller scene from 13 Going On 30. One of the best scenes in any movie ever!!

    *Erin

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    1. YES. I always forget about that scene!! I love that movie so much (although in Australia, it was called Suddenly 30, for reasons that I don't entirely understand...).

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  9. OMG HOW I LOVE THIS MOVIEEEEE...!

    And it's been far, FAAAAR too long since the last time I watched it. Must remedy this post-haste. I, too, have a slightly unnatural soft spot for it, on account of the fact that it was one of the first Aussie movies I saw upon arriving in Oz July 1994 (the other one being Muriel's Wedding, which was and still is one of the most brilliant and heart-wrenching movies I've seen).

    Gia Carides is also Anthony LaPaglia's wife! And I kind of love him.

    The paso doble, OH the paso doble...!

    Yes, Paul Mercurio was hot in this movie, but I also see him as today's Paul Mercurio...I mean, he's still a handsome man, but he's...not the same, eh? :D

    XOXO

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    1. So true. Still handsome, but totally not the same. And YES. MURIEL'S WEDDING. I love it so much. SO. FREAKING. MUCH.

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  10. I've never actually seen this movie, but I really hope it's on Netflix Instant because it looks awesome. Plus, I love me some good ballroom dancing. (Btw...if Burn the Floor ever comes near you, go see it! It's amaaaaaazing!)

    But I've gotta say, my favorite dance movie is Center Stage. There's something pretty fantastic about red pointe shoes and two ballet dancing men fighting over a woman. Pretty great.

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    1. Leah found it without any problems, so it seems like it IS on Netflix Instant! I love the crap out of Centre Stage. ESPECIALLY the red pointe shoes.

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  11. May I also add the AWESOME that is Pat Thompson as Shirley Hastings (who was sick while filming and died of cancer before the film's premier). She got the hysterical boganism just PERFECT.

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    1. YES. She's fantastic. I had no idea she died before the film even premiered. That makes me sad...

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