12 April 2003 | willow_chick88
Incredible Dancing....the rest un-incredible
Ballet movies are incredibly rare. Some are good movies even without the dancing and some are bad with great dancing. This movie happens to be an ok movie with incredible dancing. The characters are really caricatures with exaggerated behaviors that come off feeling very afternoon teen special-ish. The plot is incredibly predictable. You can tell what's going to happen to Jody after the first 15 minutes. However, this movie is lucky enough to have no less than three ABT members in its cast. Ethan Steifel is of course arguably the greatest male dancer in the world right now and while I was watching him I was struck with how similar he is to Baryshnikov. His every move looks effortless and gravity-defying. Sascha Radetsky shows that if he was with any other company that he'd be a principal dancer. Julie Kent should prove to be a mixture of Leslie Browne and Gelsey Kirkland and be an inspiration to another generation of girls. Amanda Schull shows a great deal of promise which really shows in the last number. Zoe Saldana is very good and is perhaps the most complex character. She carries off this acting job adequately. Susan May Pratt is of course the only non-dancer who is also lacking in any dance experience. It's actually kind of ironic that her character has to be the most technically accomplished of the students. However, she looks as natural in the environment as do her fellow dancer co-stars. The final dance sequences are amazing. One includes Rachmaninov's "2nd Piano Concerto" and is a beautiful piece. The other ballet is one that illustrates where ballet is heading. Full of flashy colors, flashy costumes, and effects, the sequence also includes some fabulous dancing. As long as you watch it for the dancing, this movie will please you. If you watch it as a movie than you'll be disappointed.