Jump to content
This Site Uses Cookies. If You Want to Disable Cookies, Please See Your Browser Documentation. ×

Hairspray (the movie)

Recommended Posts

Does anybody else like Hairspray as much as I do? It is probably my favorite dance movie -- the fat girl can REALLY dance and becomes everybody's favorite dancer because she IS such a good dancer, and she dances because she has just gotta dance..... I watch it every few months and just LOVE it. As far as dance movies go, it is probably my favorite. it LOOKS silly, and it's certainly got some moments that are forced, but the DANCING itself is just wonderful, and it's really faithful IMO to the way people who love dancing feel about dancing.

Link to comment

I think that those dances are rather in the tradition of the old ballets of grand scale, which encompassed all ages. There were special dances for the children, and material for very mature dancers, especially those of a more portly or matronly figure. Some of them could be quite active, and the agility of the oldsters and the full-figured were much applauded by the audiences. Ballet used to celebrate the variety of human form, and concentrated less on an attenuated or tiny frame. :wink:

Link to comment

I like this movie very much too. I wasn't the fat girl in high school, I was the freaks and geeks girl. So I love how Tracy as the underdog overcomes all odds to become the dance queen and win the class hunk as her boyfriend.

She's really a wonderful role model, she always believes in herself and has a warm open heart.

Great wigs too! :grinning:

Link to comment
Does anybody else like Hairspray as much as I do?

I don't know -- do you like it as much as I do?

I think of Hairspray like I think of Giselle -- a work in which dance is a metaphor for life, the main mode of communication, and the subject of the piece. How they dance is who they are, dancing is important in their world, dancing has the power to change events. What's not to like?

Link to comment
Guest eskimopieo

Oh, how I wish I'd had Tracy's confidence in high school! It has been ages since I've seen this movie, but I have found myself referencing it a lot lately for some reason.

How they dance is who they are, dancing is important in their world, dancing has the power to change events. What's not to like?

This is something I really like about another movie, "Strictly Ballroom". In this one, the characters learn there is more to dance than the steps. I love it when the dance federation chairman explains why they can't let people make up their own steps--if they can't do the steps, they can't teach them, and then they'd all be out of a job!

Link to comment

As a Baltimorean, I loooove Hairspray and have fond memories of the filming, opening, etc. of the movie. In addition its celebration of dancing, of course, what I adore is its uniquely Baltimore sensibility -- you're fat, you talk funny, so what?! :wink:

Has anyone seen the Broadway show -- it won just about every Tony. I think it's touring now, although I missed it when it came "home" to Baltimore for its first stop.

Link to comment

Sandik, you are a person after my heart -- I do so TOTALLY agree, it's comparable to Giselle and not Red Shoes or Turning Point,

Do I love it more than you? I challenge you.... prove that you love the movie more than I do, not in words, but.. well, let's see? do you get up and do the Madison with them every time? Which variation has the Jackie Gleason? Who's your favorite dancer? (Mine is hte slender boy in the tan vertically-striped shirt -- in hte Madison production number -- that's always on the edge of hte screen and they never feature, except that they do show him doing the world's greatest Mashed potato in hte opening credits). Would you do a Clearasil commercial if Corny asked you to? Who is Tracy Turnblatt's manager?

Scoop, you should be proud.

Eskimopieo, you're so ritght -- Strictly Ballroom is a major contender, it's a great dance movie. In a humbler vein, but honest and sweet, and close to your home, have you seen "Shag the Movie," about Carolina shag? Truly sweet.

But the other GREAT dance movie to me is the recent Japanese "Swing Time" -- if you haven't seen it, waste NO time.

Link to comment

I did enjoy the dancing in "Shag." My then-boyfriend and I would have taken Carolina Shag classes had we been able to find any.

As is so often in the movies, the winners of the dance contest aren't nearly as good as some of the dancers in the background, who are doing really interesting stuff. But maybe Pudge and Chip won because of their heart.

Link to comment

I don't want to make this into a contest (especially if Corny Collins isn't here to judge) so perhaps we can agree that we both love it equally. I do get up and do the Madison along with everyone on the screen, and though I appreciate the Mashed Potato guy, I'm fonder of the scenes in Motormouth Maybelle's shop.

I saw the touring version of the Broadway show (it opened here in Seattle before it went to New York) and though it was great fun, it was more singing that dancing. And for all that Harvey Fierstein was excellent, he wasn't Divine.

I'm goofy about any movie where people dance with conviction. When Chicago opened there was the usual blather about whether we can accept movie musicals at the beginning of the 21st entury. We seem to be able to accept that people might break out in song -- what's so strange about dancing...?

Link to comment

Sandik asked

We seem to be able to accept that people might break out in song -- what's so strange about dancing...?

Sandik, that is an EXCELLENT question, and moreover, when did this become hte case? In the great Fred Astaire/Ginger ROgers movies, it happens all the time -- in the later ones, it's partly because we EXPECT Fred and Ginger to dance -- but in Roberta they just do it.

A side-line on your question: remember the office guy in the Japanese "Shall we dance" who goes down the aisle and "spots" his next direction as if he were doing hte Argentine tango? It is rich, no? partly because it is SO true to a certain way of just LIVING for dance -- you look at everybody in the office looking at him, unable to keep from dancing in the office. So MUCH of hte movie is about the tensoin between the customs and conventions of a highly homogeneous non-dancing culture, on the one hand, and the deep satisfactions of dancing on the other....

There's a scene where our hero is waiting for his late-night bus and is seen practicing the steps he could not do in class, that TRULY speaks to my condition. And everybody I've talked to who's seen the movie has accepted that scene as key.

Link to comment

This thread is giving me all sorts of ideas for my next video store trip. I can't believe here I am, born, raised & living in South Carolina, and I haven't seen Shag The Movie. The Shag is our official state dance (you can even get a special "Shag" license plate for your car), and when I was in college, no self-respecting Carolinian would admit to not knowing how to do this dance. Plenty of places still have Shag contests, especially in the Myrtle Beach area. djb, if you are ever visiting along the South Carolina coast, I'm sure you will be able to find a club somewhere offering Shag lessons.

Hairspray is a movie I wanted to see when it came out, but never did, and then I just forgot about it!

Link to comment
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...