Stepping Out

Film

Musicals

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>5</span>/5
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Time Out says

Schlepping out, more like. Another feel-good movie to follow Shirley Valentine, this is set in a New York dance class run by feisty coulda-been Mavis (Minnelli), who had her week of glory understudying on Broadway. Now, her career hampered by her boyfriend's ego, fulfilment lies in teaching a lovable bunch of stereotypes and social inadequates under the steely eye of cantankerous pianist Winters. Asked to stage a routine for a charity show, Mavis has to whip these no-hopers into a crack corps de tap. This isn't a Willy Russell job, but the rules are the same: plain folk overcome problems in one life-affirming moment, braving the disapproval of society and/or him at home. There's little room for a strong cast to manoeuvre. Minnelli plies her gamine act likeably, although when it comes to her big 'what good is it sitting alone in your room' closer, tacked on as a cynical box-office sop, she's the same old Liza with a Zzzz. Gilbert opens up Richard Harris' church-hall bound stage play with all the visual flair of a sitcom episode.
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Release details

UK release:

1991

Duration:

110 mins

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5

Average User Rating

5 / 5

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Chris Cambs

This film was panned. It was panned by the writer of the stage play, Richard Harris, who hated the savage re-write of his work. It was panned by some of the actors, who didn't want to be associated with a critical flop. And it's been panned here too. So, it's no good then? Wrong!! I saw this film when it first opened. I, along with the entire audience, laughed so hard I got stomach cramps. I returned to the cinema three times more to get another dose of fun and pathos. The cinema was crowded out every time. This film has incredible humour and penetrating drama; some parts are creepy - especially Patrick (Mavis's partner) and Andy's hubby - really nasty. The actors, especially Julie Walters, Shelley Winters and Bill Irwin, are superb. Liza Minellis, despite fluffing a couple of lines, is terrific. The entire cast is wonderful; ordinary and yet extraordinary in their portrayals of unrealistic expectations, frustrated dreams and dull, mundane lives transformed by a weekly dance class. If you get the chance to see it, do so. If you don't get the chance, you've missed out. Get the film from somewhere, somehow and enjoy!! Oh, and as a PS, ignore the professional critics.....

Chris Cambs

This film was panned. It was panned by the writer of the stage play, Richard Harris, who hated the savage re-write of his work. It was panned by some of the actors, who didn't want to be associated with a critical flop. And it's been panned here too. So, it's no good then? Wrong!! I saw this film when it first opened. I, along with the entire audience, laughed so hard I got stomach cramps. I returned to the cinema three times more to get another dose of fun and pathos. The cinema was crowded out every time. This film has incredible humour and penetrating drama; some parts are creepy - especially Patrick (Mavis's partner) and Andy's hubby - really nasty. The actors, especially Julie Walters, Shelley Winters and Bill Irwin, are superb. Liza Minellis, despite fluffing a couple of lines, is terrific. The entire cast is wonderful; ordinary and yet extraordinary in their portrayals of unrealistic expectations, frustrated dreams and dull, mundane lives transformed by a weekly dance class. If you get the chance to see it, do so. If you don't get the chance, you've missed out. Get the film from somewhere, somehow and enjoy!! Oh, and as a PS, ignore the professional critics.....