BEST FOOT FORWARD
5 SURPRISE DANCE SCENES
PUBLISHED 17 APR 2017
PENNY MARSHALL / 1988
"You can't keep a kid from growing up."
Josh (Tom Hanks) is a 12-year-old whose wish to be big is granted when he wakes up as a 30-something. His inner child is still apparent when Josh shows off when coming across a large floor piano in a toy store. Josh plays chopsticks with his future boss Mr MacMillan (Robert Loggia), the owner of a toy company, who is captivated by Josh's child-like enthusiasm. As well as it being a great promotion for MacMillan’s company, the duo are immersed in their innocent enjoyment of the giant piano, which is equally captivating for audiences in and out of the film.
RICHARD CURTIS / 2003
"If you look for it, I have got a sneaking feeling you will find that love actually is all around."
The Prime Minister (Hugh Grant) dances along to The Pointer Sisters' track "Jump" after winning a debate with the US President. We are given the impression that the Prime Minister will uphold his professional profile but this scene unexpectedly gives the audience a more human side, which allows viewers to warm to the character. He dances like nobody is watching and is clearly captivated by the music; until he turns to see his assistant. He immediately stops due to embarrassment, allowing the audience to relate further to the Prime Minister's comical actions out of sympathy.
13 GOING ON 30
GARY WINICK / 2004
"I think all of us want to feel something that we have forgotten or turned our backs on."
13 GOING ON 30 is also about a young teenager briefly experiencing life as an adult. At a dull party organised by her boss (Andy Serkis), Jenna (Jennifer Garner), a teenager who has suddenly become an adult, shows off her moves to Michael Jackson's "Thriller" in a bid to bring the party to life. Jenna manages to get the guests to recreate the Thriller dance with her by bringing out their inner child and burying their inhibitions. This reflects the film's main narrative of experiencing adulthood from a child's point of view and is perfectly encapsulated through the joy of dance and music.
ANNE FLETCHER / 2008
"Oh my god, I feel like I found out my favourite love song was written about a sandwich."
Jane (Katherine Heigl) is a very particular and organised woman who is in love with the idea of falling in love. However, when Jane meets Kevin (James Marsden), he stomps on all of Jane’s beliefs. Jane and Kevin are two completely different people but their opposing personalities only become more attractive to each other. While sharing a drunk evening together, debating the lyrics to "Bennie and the Jets" by Elton John, they decide to dance on the bar in front of a drunk audience, and suddenly realise the feelings they have for each other when Jane slips and falls into Kevin’s arms. Their situation sets up the relationship that Jane and Kevin are destined to have and it is altogether an endearing and lovable moment.
PAUL BRICKMAN / 1983
"So your parents are going out of town. You got the place all to yourself."
Joel’s (Tom Cruise) parents have gone away on holiday, giving Joel a free house. To celebrate, Joel dances half naked to his favourite song "Old Time Rock ‘n Roll" by Bob Seger. He celebrates his freedom and that he can do whatever he wants, as he is used to always doing as he is told. The dance scene has been recreated many times on social media, including on the American sitcom THE NANNY (CBS 1993-1999) recreated by Niles (Daniel Davis). Joel’s "shirt and socks" outfit has been used as fancy dress for many costume parties, while his freedom has become synonymous with teenagers who relate to the momentary rebellion that the dance scene represents.
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