Dance Flick
PG-13
Entertainment: -1/2
Acceptability: -4

Damon Wayans Jr., Craig Wayans, Shoshana Bush, Essence Atkins and Affion Crockett. Written by Keenen Ivory Wayans & Shawn Wayans & Marlon Wayans & Craig Wayans & Damien Dante Wayans. Directed by Damien Dante Wayans.

FILM SYNOPSIS: Two generations of the Wayans family attempt to satirize dance movies in this tale of a young street dancer, Thomas Uncles (Damon Wayans, Jr.), and a beautiful young woman, Megan White (Shoshana Bush), who has lost the will to dance since her mother was killed while on her way to her daughter’s important tryout. Dance Flick sends up the dance movie genre, including Step Up, You Got Served, and Flashdance.

PREVIEW REVIEW: Have you ever tried to tell one of those jokes that required lots of story buildup and details before the punch line? Bill Cosby could do it. Richard Pryor could. So could Danny Thomas and George Carlin. But not everyone can. And if you are not a great storyteller, the punch line can be met with a groan, your hard work suddenly ridiculed. We’ve all been there, left with egg on our face, embarrassed for trying to be amusing. Hence, I will not rip into the work of the Wayans, as if they were talentless boobs. They tried to make a bawdy Airplane/American Pie-like comedy. They worked hard at it (well, maybe strained is a more appropriate word). And three times I laughed. As I left the screening, I overheard a “civilian” couple say the same thing – they laughed three times.

The trouble with bawdy, broad humor is that it takes skill and you have to know when to rein in or your work just becomes salacious, crude and wasteful. The Wayans never rein in. They go full bore. And the audience is left with a train wreck.

Political history buffs will recall that President Johnson found himself in a quagmire during his Viet Nam leadership. He just kept throwing money – and lives – into the fray, never pulling back or assessing the way to win such a war. Well, Dance Flick is the Viet Nam of movies.

Subtlety is never used, nor much wit that couldn’t be classified as coarse or visually obscene. After five minutes, I kept looking at my watch, wanting to be anyplace else, much like those soldiers during the Southeast Asia conflict.

I realize it sounds like I decided to rip into the filmmakers’ work after all. Oh, trust me, I could have used a venom-dipped goose quill on this monstrosity. But I refrained. Read the content. It will give you an idea of what I went through on your behalf.

Preview Reviewer: Phil Boatwright
Distributor: Paramount Pictures and MTV Films

Summary
Crude Language: There’s no subject, no celebrity, and no body part immune from the Wayans’ attempt at satire, which is more mockery than parody. Oh, and one flatulence joke.
Obscene Language: wice I heard the N-word, you know, that word only black people can call themselves. I never could figure that out. That word is atrocious, demeaning, and yet when a black comedian delivers it, black audiences howl. Women – and men – are called bitch at least seven times; the f-word makes it into a rap song and there is a scattering of other obscenities and expletives featured in lieu of meaningful dialogue.
Profanity: One profane use of God’s name.
Violence: Slapstick visuals abound – such as a woman hit by a car, then run over by another, then another.
Sexual Intercourse: Many heavy-handed sexual innuendoes.
Nudity: None
Homosexual Conduct: Gay jokes and characters featured in a bawdy dance routine.
Sexually Suggestive Action/Dialog: None
Drug Abuse: None
Other: Jokes about celebrities with DUIs, fat jokes, gay jokes, blind jokes, Uncle Tom jokes, and in several scenes a woman’s private part is accentuated under tight-fitting clothing and joked about.
Running Time: 83 minutes
Intended Audience: Morons

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