I Saw A Film!
This isn’t Hairspray, sadly, it’s much less kooky or visually exciting, though few things can compare with a John Waters mien. Pointedly this film is still in rotation because of the three young ladies who star, baby versions of Shannen Doherty, Helen Hunt, and Sarah Jessica Parker. The kids want to appear on a dance contest show to be regulars. Parents fume or worry about their darlings getting sidetracked by dreams. And in the end the kids we’ve exercised our attention on wind up coming out on top, long after a lot of lousy jokes and irresponsible parenting.
This one followed on the steps of Flashdance and Footloose and would be followed later by the splendor of Dirty Dancing. For some reason the 80s resonated with these dance epics that audiences couldn’t get enough of. So much so that I recall a joke between my friends and I was to just suddenly stop what we were doing fix one another with a glare and insist, “Because dancing is my life!” A line we’d heard from a commercial for an episode of the television series Fame. This never failed to throw us into fits of giggling. Nothing wrong with dancing, hell I enjoy seeing the pretty ladies enjoying themselves, it’s just not one of those things I’ve ever felt the need to struggle for.
And so, we see a lot of acrobatic dancing with stunt doubles in fluffy wigs to snippets of 80s tunes. That’s about it. There’s a rich girl who expects to win, but she’s so thinly portrayed we don’t even really enjoy her comeuppance. Most of the time you’re just trying to keep the tots straight.
The film runs free on Prime, and seems to me to be poorly named. The girls are pretty serious. They’re not partying and hunting pleasure. They’re locked down and competing for recognition. This seems to me to be the opposite of “fun”. But, that’s me. User experiences vary. We were all so young once!