25 April 2012 | jocred255
more than just another dance movie
Although packaged as a dance movie, and presenting more than its share of original choreography, Five Hours South (Crew2Crew) is not your average dance movie experience. All of the standard devices are here--small town nobody gives up everything to go for his dream, struggles to prove his worth to a hard-nosed choreographer, then achieves success at last. But in this movie, based as it is on a true story, they are played out in a totally unpredictable way-- real people have real lives, real loves, real commitments and a whole load of emotional baggage that they can't just dump to fly off to some permanent state of stardom.
The location of the movie --Southern Italy in the fall--is a million miles away from your standard American inner city. Instead of bright candycolor and urban grit, we get chiaroscuro,big empty theatres, dramatic shadowy closeups and warm Mediterranean glows. And a beautifully nuanced soundtrack with musical passages not normally associated with a hip hop dance movie. Being set in Italy, you know the story line will be more than just filler between dance numbers--there are passions flaming, odds to settle and promises to keep that go beyond the dance drama and at times take over from it.
Unlike your standard dance dream chaser --struggling to choose between international fame and the trailer park-- Luca at the start of the movie has managed to make something of his life. He has a career in the military police in the proud family tradition, a woman who loves him whom he is about to marry, promises he's made to himself and other people along the way. After more than a few years of flips and spins in the local club on his day off, Luca's dance dream is looking pretty downsized. When his flashy friend/rival Mino reappears out of nowhere and kick-starts him to follow his dream, Luca's no kid anymore---his decision to leave everything and everyone behind and go for it is tinged with desperation. He has a lot to gain, but a lot more to lose.
Of course, against all the odds Luca makes it, just like every other dance movie hero. But in this case "making it" doesn't get rid of those big questions like who he is, what he wants his life to be and what he is running away from. Those questions are all still right there even after his dream comes true. And the story doesn't end until Luca answers them.