With Footloose, the remake, now out in theaters, it seemed only appropriate to take a look at the top ten dance movies of all time. We all know and love them, regardless if we’ll admit it or not. And now, in the words of Kevin Bacon in the original Footloose, “Let’s dance!”
1. Dirty Dancing – In 1987, Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey had young girls everywhere swooning and begging their parents for dance lessons. There’s drama, edgy dance moves, and of course, steamy love scenes. Pack all this together, and you have not only one of the best dance movies of all times, but also one of the great love stories. After all, “nobody puts Baby in a corner.”
2. Footloose – If you were a teenager in the ‘80s, then surely you know the lyrics to the Kenny Loggins song, “Footloose,” by heart. That’s because Kevin Bacon and Lori Singer, not to mention young Sarah Jessica Parker and Sean Penn, danced their way into teenage hearts in 1984’s Footloose. It’s the classic case of good versus evil (or young verses old) with the end dance scene being one that has gone done in history as one of the best of the best.
3. Singin’ in the Rain – The true test of a great movie is if it lasts for years to come. That’s certainly true of 1952’s Singin in the Rain. Gene Kelly tapped his way into America’s hearts with this classic dance movie starring Debbie Reynolds and Donald O’ Connor. Admit it; you’ve danced in the rain with an umbrella too, right?
4. Saturday Night Fever – John Travolta, Paul Pape, Robert Costanzo, Fran Drescher and Karen Lynn Gorney brought the 1970’s to life in the 1977 hit Saturday Night Fever. In this movie, a young, working-class Brooklyn man (John Travolta) finds his escape from everyday life by becoming “king of the dance floor.” We’ve all been “Stayin’ Alive” since the day John Travolta showed us how to tear up the dance floor in a leisure suit.
5. Step Up – 2006’s Step Up might not be up there with the classics, like Gone With the Wind or Casablanca, but there’s something to be said about a movie that spawned two sequels. Good looking bad boy Channing Tatum teams up with Jenna Dewan to show a new generation some stunning dance moves. Young people flocked to this movie in droves, and with a cast like that, can you blame them?
6. Flashdance – The 1980’s was certainly a time for great (albeit cheesy) dance movies. Enter 1983 and we have Flashdance. The main character was a welder by day and an exotic dancer by night, which provided for pivotal movie moments. Along with incredible dance moves, the movie also produced music classics as well, like Irene Car’s theme song aptly titled, “Flashdance.”
7. Black Swan – Opinions were divided with this flick, but Natalie Portman’s performance as a psycho ballerina was both terrifying and completely beautiful, leading to her Oscar for Best Actress in 2010. Love it or hate it, Black Swan was haunting, with some gorgeous choreography.
8. Bring It On – Sure, maybe it’s not the best acted or the best written movie of all time, but 2000’s Bring It On delivered three sequels, so there’s certainly something to be said about this dancing/cheerleading movie. The main plot revolves around high school cheerleaders, but there are certainly plenty of dance-offs to qualify this as a dance movie. Kristen Dunst helped make this move an instant classic among the high school crowd.
9. Chicago – Broadway meets the big screen with this 2002 blockbuster hit. With huge names like Renee Zellweger, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Richard Gere, it’s easy to see why it was a success. Pork pie hats and fishnet stockings are reason enough to land this movie on the list.
10. Grease – Grease is the ultimate dance movie, starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton John. The slick-haired leader of the T-Birds, Danny Zuko, falls hopelessly in love with the Australian sweetheart Sandy Olsson. The songs, and the dance moves, still live on over 30-years later.
What dance movies make your top ten list? Sound off below!