Directed by: Damien Wayans
Premise: A parody of recent teen dance films. A new student at an inner city school joins the dance team.
What Works: The two lead actors in the film, Shoshana Bush and Damon Wayans Jr., show considerable talent and comic timing and hopefully in the future they will be able to get into a film that is a better showcase of their abilities.
What Doesn’t: The parody film is one of the most difficult genres to pull off successfully. When these films work, in pictures like Airplane!, Blazing Saddles, and the original Scary Movie, it is usually because the filmmakers have a complete understanding of the genre that they are sending up, including its conventions and clichés, the politics that it carries with it, and what audiences respond to. Satire, especially of this sort, is a very sophisticated undertaking but unfortunately the deluge of recent parodies are some of the laziest films being released by major studios, and Dance Flick is no different. Like virtually all recent attempts, the film throws a bunch of pop culture references at the screen in hope that some of it will stick. Unfortunately, none of it does. Dance Flick has no insight into the genre, and it looks more like the filmmakers just saw the trailers for the films they were satirizing instead actually watching them. With nothing to say about musicals, the film falls back on toilet humor but none of it is staged very well and there is literally nothing funny in the entire eighty-three minute running time of this movie.
Bottom Line: Dance Flick is another film giving parody a bad name. It is a shame because there is a smart and funny send up of musicals to be made, but it is not this piece of hackwork.
Episode: #241 (May 31, 2009)