PG-13 for some sexual references and brief
Oct. 15, 2004
Richard Gere, Jennifer Lopez, Susan Sarandon,
Stanley Tucci, Bobby Cannavale
The Japanese Film 'Shall We Dance'
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'Shall We Dance?'
By Phil Boatwright
- I really wasn’t looking forward to this remake of the 1997
Japanese film about a businessman wanting to spice up his life by becoming
a ballroom dancer. And since Ms. Lopez has failed to find suitable vehicles
lately, and because the trailer for the film is a dud, I simply expected the
American version to be a misstep. I was pleasantly surprised.
Dissatisfied with his comfortable life, a married businessman takes up ballroom
dancing in order to meet a dance instructor he sees each night as his commuter
train passes her business. But it doesn’t take long before he realizes
that he enjoys dancing. Closely following the Asian version, Miramax has updated
it only by replacing the lead roles with Hollywood names and perhaps some
Our hero keeps this new interest a secret from his wife, but, well, I don’t
want to give anything away. Suffice it to say, this is not about adultery,
but about a man finding his way and realizing what he has. Not as dimensional
as the foreign version, but it is charming, with delightful performances from
several supporting actors. What’s more, marriage is lifted up, with
Ms. Sarandon giving a profound definition of what it means to be united through
life with a soul mate.
Rating: PG-13 The film has three profanities and a couple
of minor expletives, as well as a couple of crude sexual innuendos. One macho
character is revealed to be a closet homosexual, but the film does not attempt
to promote the gay lifestyle.
Video Alternative: If you do not wish to support a film
where Christ’s name is used as a mere expletive, then rent the Japanese
version. Once you’ve adjusted to the subtitles, you’ll find it
Phil Boatwright is the editor of The Movie Reporter. Review used by permission.
Go to Phil Boatwright's website at www.moviereporter.com
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