VenVenue: Empire Theatre, Sunderland
Date: 23rd February 2004
Rating: 3/5
Reviewed by:
Wayne Miller

The trend of turning films into musicals is set to continue, with Lord of the Rings soon to get the treatment. But what does it take to get it right? What is the perfect formula for a successful transition?

This production is based on the film of the same name starring Kevin Bacon and Sex and the City star Sarah Jessica Parker.

The story centres on Ren, a young outsider from Chicago who moves to a small town called Beaumont, only to find his favourite pastime dancing has been made illegal. He must convince the local youth to stand against the town elders and bring dancing back to the town.

But with great songs and pure energy thrown at you from the youthful cast, the plot is largely overshadowed. The script seems to have been deliberately underdeveloped to allow the great songs and dance numbers to shine through.

Marilyn Cutts (Vi Moore) Taylor James (Willard) and Cassidy Janson (Rusty) all deliver show stealing supporting performances.

Sadly Chris Jarvis, in the lead role of the Ren, does not cut it vocally. He struggles to hit the high notes and is sometimes drowned out by the volume of the band. However, his strength is in his feet and the man certainly can dance.

When all said and done Footloose has not hit upon the perfect formula for the stage to screen transition. But if you're looking for energy, great songs and great dancing, this show is just the ticket.

It's no Full Monty but you will leave the theatre wanting to dance the night away.

(c) Wayne Miller 2004. For syndication rights, please email.

Stuff to buy


Footloose DVD

Footloose / Flashdance DVD

Footloose VHS

Footloose Original Soundtrack

Footloose Original Broadway Cast Recording

Footloose [Australian Bonus Tracks]

Broadway's Footloose Musical: Vocal Selections

The Essential Kenny Loggins Double CD [IMPORT]

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