A few weeks ago the 2017 re-imagining version of the absolute classic Dirty Dancing aired on ABC… Logic dictates that because of the wonderful cast that was cast in this adaption that it would be some sort of good, however, this was not the case at all. This version is a flop and just left me with a whole lot of questions beginning with WHY???
Question 1: Why did someone feel the need to remake this classic? It is a classic FOR A REASON. Not every movie becomes iconic and when one does, that should be a sign that it should stay exactly the way that it was intended to be. Dirty Dancing (1987) is an absolute treat of a film, it seriously did not need a revamp.
Question 2: Why did the creators of the new film feel a need to change parts of the original? Well, maybe they didn’t want it to be exactly the same? Well, in that case, they should have written a NEW STORY. A story that was not Dirty Dancing perhaps? Maybe something leading on from the original but changing fundamental parts of the original to fit into a 2017/ still in the same time frame just did not work. This leads us back to question number 1- WHY REMAKE A CLASSIC?
Question number 3: And this was probably the biggest issue I had with the film- Why remix the beautiful music that made the classic so iconic? The moment I heard “She’s like the wind” set to a kind of hip hop beat I wanted to cry! Music can make or break something and this case it only helped break this film even further.
Question number 4: Why cast two people who have no chemistry on film, as one of the most romantic movie couples of all time? Abigail Breslin (Baby) and Colt Prattes (Johhny) had no chemistry on screen WHATSOEVER! They sent no shivers down my spine and there was no spark. No amount of editing could have created a spark that just did not exists.
Question number 5: Why change the ending? When I read about this major change in the film, I thought that maybe it would help establish a different type of Dirty Dancing. Maybe it would bring closure to fans of the film and give us some sort of view into the future of such loved characters. But to no avail. The ending of the new film is somewhere between a bad flashforward or a bad flashback, I am not sure as to which suits the part better. It was just weird…
The part that bothers me is, are people who have never seen the classic going to think that this film is what Dirty Dancing really is? Because if so then they would be missing the magic that the original brought to the screen all those years ago. I just hope this version does not turn people off the original one.
The acting was stiff and the creative direction was just in the completely wrong direction. Even small things like editing the lip syncing audio in sync with the visual picture were off. It was just a really bad situation. But I guess there is always the next time and one should always try again… Just please do not try and experiment with such a classic. Let’s leave iconic musicals to be enjoyed as iconic musicals. Please and Thank you!