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Footloose (1984)

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A city teenager moves to a small town where rock music and dancing have been banned, and his rebellious spirit shakes up the populace.

Director:

Herbert Ross

Writer:

Dean Pitchford
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Popularity
1,504 ( 1,148)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kevin Bacon ... Ren
Lori Singer ... Ariel
John Lithgow ... Rev. Shaw Moore
Dianne Wiest ... Vi Moore
Chris Penn ... Willard (as Christopher Penn)
Sarah Jessica Parker ... Rusty
John Laughlin ... Woody
Elizabeth Gorcey Elizabeth Gorcey ... Wendy Jo
Frances Lee McCain ... Ethel McCormack
Jim Youngs ... Chuck Cranston
Douglas Dirkson ... Burlington Cranston
Lynne Marta ... Lulu Warnicker
Arthur Rosenberg Arthur Rosenberg ... Wes Warnicker
Timothy Scott ... Andy Beamis
Alan Haufrect Alan Haufrect ... Coach Roger Dunbar
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Storyline

Classic tale of teenage rebellion and repression features a delightful combination of dance choreography and realistic and touching performances. When teenager Ren McCormack and his family move from big-city Chicago to a small Midwestern town, he's in for a real case of culture shock. Though he tries hard to fit in, the streetwise Ren can't quite believe he's living in a place where rock music and dancing are illegal. However, there is one small pleasure: Ariel Moore, a troubled but lovely blonde with a jealous boyfriend. And a Bible-thumping minister, who is responsible for keeping the town dance-free. Ren and his classmates want to do away with this ordinance, especially since the senior prom is around the corner, but only Ren has the courage to initiate a battle to abolish the outmoded ban and revitalize the spirit of the repressed townspeople. Fast-paced drama is filled with such now-famous hit songs as the title track and "Let's Hear It for the Boy". Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The music is on his side. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 February 1984 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Footloose See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$8,200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,556,935, 20 February 1984

Gross USA:

$80,035,402

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$80,035,402
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kevin Bacon was offered the leading role for the Stephen King movie Christine (1983), at the same time that he was asked to do a screentest for Footloose (1984). The producers had to convince Bacon that turning down a sure role in "Christine" for a part he might not even get in "Footloose" was the wiser choice. The producers told him that if he got the part for "Footloose", the role would make him a star. Thirty seconds into the screentest, Bacon was offered the part. See more »

Goofs

When the youths are all dancing to the tape in the portable radio, the aerial is up. When Rev. Shaw Moore approaches the radio and stops the tape, the aerial is now down. See more »

Quotes

Reverend Shaw Moore: [discussing Ariel] We're losing her, Vi. Don't you see that?
Vi Moore: No. I see you chasing after her and I see her running from you.
Reverend Shaw Moore: She's become so willful, so obstinate.
Vi Moore: She's like her father. The two of you were so wonderful once. You had so much to talk about. I was almost jealous.
Reverend Shaw Moore: It's not as if we don't talk. It's just that sometimes people run out of things to say.
Vi Moore: Shaw, it's 20 years now I've been a minister's wife. And I've been quiet, supportive, unobtrusive and after 20 years I still think ...
See more »

Alternate Versions

CBS edited 10 minutes from this film for its 1987 network television premiere. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Kicking and Screaming (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

Hurts So Good
Performed by John Mellencamp (as John Cougar)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Silly, but lighthearted caper
24 June 2002 | by alainenglishSee all my reviews

"Footloose" is a fun and very lighthearted motion picture that promises a good time and delivers.

The film has a simple, if unlikely, plotline. Streetsmart but gentle teenager Ren MacCormack(Kevin Bacon) arrives from the big city with his mother in the backwater town of Bomont. Enrolling at the local high school, he is appalled to discover the town's adults have imposed a law on "public dancing" and rock music, as enforced and practiced by the local preacher(John Lithgow). Ren quickly sets about changing things, falling in love with the preacher's daughter Ariel (Lori Singer) in the process.

The story is a little unlikely yet it is perfectly suitable for the teenaged audience at which it is pitched. The script takes some time to explore its simple theme - dancing and rock music, and what they symbolise for young people. Three scenes help to lay this out. The first sees Ren dancing by himself in a barn; the town meeting where Ren presents his case to the townspeople and explains to them the meaning of the dance; and the final prom sequence in which the teens of Bomont revel in their newfound liberation.

As the leading man, Kevin Bacon carries off his role very well. Ren isn't really a macho hero revelling in coolness, he's a down-to-earth young man trying to the right thing by his peers. His romance with Lori Singer's character Ariel is formulaic but perfectly inoffensive.

The film could have perhaps done with a little more nastiness to fully contrast against Ren's earnest intentions. Even Ariel's brutish boyfriend(Jim Young) fails to inject much tension in this respect and the final fistfight between him and Ren comes across as being a bit lame.

John Lithgow's characterisation is very good but it is a little too subtle. As the town Reverend and preacher of all things pure and holy, his extreme views come across not so much as puritanical, just merely uptight. The change that eventually occurs in his attitudes is hinted at very early on. The result is that he is nowhere near is frightening or intimidating a character as he could have been. At the same time his troubled relationships with his rebellious daughter and quiet wife(Dianne Wiest) are very well written and acted. In these scenes he excels and his character's development seems very natural.

On the technical side, the film is well-shot and the gloriously Eighties soundtrack complements the proceedings very well, bringing the necessary exhuberance and bounce to the whole movie.

Whilst "Footloose" is certainly no masterpiece, it succeeds in being a lighthearted knockabout caper, and as such is a very enjoyable movie.


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