God save Craig Brewer's Footloose, which is less a movie for today's audiences than for yesterday's -- and I mean that in the good way. This is a pop entertainment made with an eye for detail: When our teen hero and the young woman he's been wooing move in for their first kiss, the setting sun peeps out from behind their conjoined silhouettes. Corny, right? Get this: The rays beam out through a star filter. You can roll your eyes at the obviousness of it all, or you can marvel that a filmmaker cared to make a choice so traditional, so clichéd, that it becomes a kind of pop-culture mission statement. It's as if Brewer is taking a stand for movies that look like movies instead of audience hipness barometers.
Craig Brewer knows that some of you are skeptical about his remake of Footloose, the 1984 Kevin Bacon teen classic about lusty high-schoolers who kick off their Sunday shoes, strain against their small town conservative parents, and "angry dance" their way to prom. But the director, who helped bring rap music to the Academy's attention in his Oscar-winning Hustle & Flow (and next chained Christina Ricci to a radiator in Black Snake Moan, another tale set in the Southern region where Brewer was raised), comes at it with a fan's devotion and with an awareness of how religion, morality and politics still overlap in the lives of teenagers today. And, as he watched Kevin Bacon do when he was a kid watching Footloose on the big screen, Brewer admits to indulging in his fair share of "angry dancing."
"When I open my mouth, what comes out is country. It was going to sound country no matter what, but I didn't want it to be too different," explains singer Blake Shelton of his fresh-scrubbed country version of Kenny Loggin's "Footloose," recorded for Craig Brewer's upcoming remake. "It's music that was rock back then but is country now," he adds, though Deniece Williams, Sammy Hagar, and Shalamar might disagree. Whatever. Give Shelton's version a listen and see if it's worth kicking off your Sunday shoes for. [The Boot via Vulture]
The new trailer for Craig Brewer's Footloose remake debuted today, offering your first sneak peek at the contemporized, MTV-friendly update of the 1984 Kevin Bacon classic. To learn more about Brewer's fresh-but-faithful take on the trailblazing dance pic, Movieline spoke with star and award-winning dancer Kenny Wormald, your new Ren McCormack. (To answer your first question: Yes, he's a fan of the original, even though it came out the year he was born.)