Rated PG-13 113 min. 2011

You probably weren’t expecting a profound existential enigma in the new Footloose, co-writer/director Craig Brewer’s remake of the affectionately remembered 1984 youth-empowerment Kevin-Bacon-double-cheeseburger. Nevertheless, it is there. There are a few minor tweaks. The automobile accident that inspires the small town of Bomont to enact its radical laws against loud music, dancing, and other risky behaviors, only alluded to in the original, is depicted here at the outset. Ren McCormack (Kenny Wormald), the newcomer from the big city, doesn’t move to Bomont with his single mother; he’s a teenage orphan living with his uncle and aunt. But Ariel (Dancing With the Stars’ Julianne Hough), the daughter of the town’s preacher (Dennis Quaid), is still a thrill-seeking rebel who’s interested in Ren. And the dance-lovin’ Ren is still ultimately determined to shake up the town’s conservative status quo. Large chunks of dialogue and individual scenes are reproduced virtually verbatim. Most of the changes Brewer does make are changes for the better, from providing a less cartoonish foundation for the town’s alarmism to providing a stronger link between Ren and the minister’s mutual grief. But mostly, it’s just a rare recognition that a satisfying, popular story can be told again simply so that another generation can get an opportunity to enjoy it — and maybe so that their parents can wallow in a little nostalgia.

Film Credits

Official Site:

Director: Craig Brewer

Writer: Craig Brewer

Producer: Craig Zadan, Neil Meron, Brad Weston and Dylan Sellers

Cast: Kenny Wormald, Julianne Hough, Dennis Quaid and Miles Teller



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