The Good

It's nice to revisit one of the phenomenon's of the 1980s.

The Bad

The extras seem very cursory in their nature.

Flashdance is the story of Alex (Jennifer Beals), a woman who works as a welder by day and stripper by night. However, what Alex really wants to do is dance and the story of this movie is her getting into ballet school.

Okay, are you done laughing?

Because this actually is the plot of this movie. The fact that it took home an Oscar should tell you all you really need to know about the 1980s. To say that Flashdance is fluff might be putting it mildly, but this movie struck a nerve, grossed $90 million at the U.S. Box Office and it became the stuff of legend.

Whether you love it or hate it, Flashdance is a movie that will never leave the public consciousness.

Features

Featurettes

They have put 5 featurettes on this release. They are:

- The History of Flashdance

- The Look of Flashdance

- Flashdance The Choreograhy

- Flashdance Music and Songs

- Releasing the Flashdance Phenomenon

These featurettes offer a pretty extensive look at the making of this film. From the history of how it got made, basically Don Simpson needed Jerry Bruckheimer to produce this movie and that's how the project got going. They examine the choreography and they talk about how they had a double for Jennifer Beals, then Director Adrian Lyne discusses trying to make the dance scenes all seem different, and basically everything was done to serve the visual nature of the movie. The release of this film seemed to polarize audiences in that critics didn't seem to like it but the American public did. And when you get right down to it that is all that really matters, right?

Video

Widescreen Version Enhanced for 16:9 TVs. This film had a very different look from a lot of other movies in that it seemed to give an arty quality to everyday life. It would make sense had they gone to cinema verite route for Alex's normal life, and then got a bit stylized when they put together the dancing scenes. This wasn't the case as it seems like what they did was give texture to everything thus reducing this film to a series of moments that play as such on this DVD.

Audio

Dolby Digital: English 5.1 Surround. French 2.0 Surround. Spanish Mono. Portuguese Mono. Subtitles: English, French, Spanish and Portuguese. The sound on this movie is almost as stylized as the visuals. In fact, if one really wanted to break things down this movie plays an assortment of music videos. There are no happy accidents in that everything is done for a reason. Nothing underscores this more than the way the audio and video play off one another.

Package

Jennifer Beals, looking sultry and barely clothed is presented on the front cover of this DVD in a very grainy looking shot. The back of this release contains a mix of production and promotional stills. There is a short description of what this film is about, a Special Features listing, a credits list and technical specs. This 2-disc set has been stored in one amaray case with one of the discs containing nothing but 6 songs from the movie.

Final Word

I remember being 10 years old or so when this movie was released and there was all this talk about how the lead actress didn't do her own dancing. Heck, there's a scene where she has to run and the rumor was (don't ask me how a 10 year old had his ear to the pulse of the cinema rumor mill) that she didn't even do that. I don't know why I cared about this but when Flashdance came to VHS I wanted to see it. Well, by the time I got around to seeing it, all that hype had worn off and I really didn't care too much by that time. So, I recall putting on the movie and being very excited for about 5 minutes. Then when it actually got into the story, I think I took it out of my player and watched Empire Strikes Back or something.

So how does that play into today's review?

Well, watching Flashdance in 2008, I sadly think I had the same experience only this time I sat through it.

Flashdance was released April 14, 1983.