There is nothing more joyous to me, more awesome, more enhancing to a movie than a good, old fashioned Magical Spontaneous, Syncronised, Dance scene in a Street.
I’m not talking about just any dance scene in a movie here. No no no. While there’s no denying a well placed, well performed dance scene can really add something to a film (Napoleon Dynamite, Pulp Fiction, Risky Business and more) I’ve got a soft spot for a particular sub-genre. I’m talking about dance scenes where the main protagonist captures random strangers on the street in a giant magic bubble of rythym and all they can do is break into spontaneous dance, in perfect sync (instantly knowing all the moves, of course), down the street.
So, now my guilty pleasure is confessed, and here are five (plus an honourable mention) superb examples that brought a giant grin to my face, raised my spirits and gave a spring to my step for the rest of the day…
1. 500 Days of Summer, “You Make My Dreams”
This guy just got laid. With Zooey Deshanal no less. Damn straight he’s going to be smiling down the street, having a celebratory dance, and he’s going to be giving off a pretty big magic spontaneous, syncronised dance bubble to capture random passers by in.
I’d be freaking dancing too, Zooey’s a fox, the only way this dude’s night could’ve gone better is if Allesandra Toresani was in there with them. (Not that I’ve given it much thought)
So good for him – the sun is shining, he’s fallen in love with a beautiful woman and he just got some. Dance away my friend with all these strangers. You deserve it.
2. The Muppets, “Life’s a Happy Song”
The first of two opening numbers on my list (and closing reprise incidentally too) which set the tone for the entire movie. As soon as this song and dance routine threw a big spontaneous, syncronised dance close I knew this movie was going to be amazing.
Who could resist that jaunty piano, good old fashioned tap shoes and Jason Seigel’s obvious pleasure in performing the routine. Life is a happy song Jason, thanks for this delicious reminder.
I couldn’t find a vid with the full sequence of it on; so here’s a snippet to keep you going until you can go away and rent it! (Can I invoice Disney’s marketing dept now?)
I also found this cute little piece while on YouTube. Thought it was a sweet little vid.
3. The Blues Brothers, “Shake Your Tail Feathers”
Ray, there is absolutely nothing wrong with the action on that piano.
The power of the magic spontaneous syncronised dancing bubble on this one is so potent one passer by felt the need to join the assembled dancers on the street by doing a hand stand flip!
This is simply one of the coolest films ever – how could it not have a giant street dancing scene in it?
The sequence speaks for itself…
4. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, “Twist and Shout”
One of the greatest movies of the 80’s with one of the greatest spontaneous syncronised dance scenes of all time.
Ferris Bueller’s magic bubble is so powerful it takes over an entire parade and turns it into an explosive street party (ably assisted by the almighty Beatles), where float models instantly fall into a dance routine in perfect unison and a group of random strangers pull some flawless moves in sync on some steps.
It’s a great day off playing hooky from school… why not celebrate with a street dance scene. I can’t think of anything more appropriate.
*Thanks Big Al for reminding me of this scene!
5. Austin Powers, “Soul Bossa Nova”
The second opening number on the list. I am certain, without a shadow of a doubt, that this sort of thing happened regularly in 60’s swinging London – this sequence entirely convinced me of it.
Austin’s magic bubble is powered by Mojo, and is one of few people who can activate a spontaneous syncronised street dance with his mere presence. He has nothing more to celebrate than simply his own grooviness.
Hon. mention; Clerks 2, “ABC”
The most randomly crowbarred dance scene in any film; but a great spontaneous street dance of epic proportions to one of the most dance inducing songs ever.
Was it a misstep for Kevin Smith? Yes, probably was. Is the film made better for it – you bet!
It’s not one of the greatest, but gets an honourable mention for giving me a gigantic smile during a film I was finding a BIG disappointment with one of the greatest movie devices known to man… the magical, spontaneous, syncronised dance in the street!