Six Degrees of Separation From "Good"
Footloose was a rubbish movie, all things considered. The premise was ridiculous, the acting completely overblown. The dance scenes defied the limits of gravity and physical possibility. But even so, it has survived as a glimpse of cinematic life in the 1980s — if not real life in the 1980s. This is a historical text. It said everything it needed to about its story, however hokey. It did not need an update.
Sadly, a “modern” version has been made and even more sadly, Blake Shelton has been tapped to sing its iconic theme song. Tragically, the video
trailer is now on TV.
According to the trailer, the new Footloose now features hoochies in Daisy Dukes pulling big-city nightclub moves you normally only see in Hip-Hop videos and farm boys in overalls moonwalkng. Hang on — isn’t this supposed to take place in the sticks? There is no way that these actors look like they spent a single minute of their Hollywood-polished lives outside suburbia at the most. Sure, Lori Singer didn’t look like the kind of girl you find in a small town either, but she looked like she broke a sweat and had absolutely no tits. The whole point of the film is that Ren had to teach her how to dance. Julianne Hough, who plays Ariel in the new film, is famous for being a dancer. Chris Penn was believable as a dude who could not dance worth a shit. Sarah Jessica Parker wore glasses. Ren drove a beat-up VW Bug because in 1984, that was a shit vehicle. A new Beetle is a hipster car. The story was possible only in a pre-internet age where small town communities could really be isolated from pop culture.
The original film poster features Ren lost in music. It tells us that he is a loner, a free spirit. The new poster, by contrast, features some pre-copulation crotchhumping that showcases the film's emphasis on the sexual relationship between the two "stars." This difference says it all.
Why, in the name of all that deserves quoting Bible verses from, does this new film exist? Why?
(And Blake: Dude, that shark you’re riding is about to jump that wave coming at you faster than you can see. Pull back, Man.)
Set for release straight into the toilet on Oct 14th 2011.