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Dance, Girl, Dance

Dance, Girl, Dance
Dorothy Arzner’s 1940 melodrama is centered on two dancers from a scuffling New York troupe—Bubbles (Lucille Ball), a brazen gold-digger who flaunts her sexual freedom, and Judy (Maureen O’Hara), a serious ballet student who dreams of high art and true love. Bubbles steals Judy’s rich beau and then steals a job from her, as a bump-and-grind dancer in a burlesque show. Bubbles brings Judy into the act, as the butt of a cruel joke, whom the crude spectators catcall and whistle offstage, but Judy boldly turns the tables on her tormentors. The movie lives up to its title—its subject really is dancing. Arzner films it with fascination and enthusiasm, and the choreography is marked by the point of view of the spectators and the dancers’ awareness that they’re being watched. Arzner—one of the few women directors in Hollywood—shows women dancers enduring men’s slobbering stares. The very raison d’être of these women’s performances is to titillate men, and that’s where the story’s two vectors intersect—art versus commerce and love versus lust. This idealistic paean to the higher realms of creative and romantic fulfillment is harshly realistic about the degradations that women endure in base entertainments—including some cinematic ones. — Richard Brody — https://www.newyorker.com/goings-on-about-town/movies/at-long-last-love

Dance, Girl, Dance

Sat February 19, 7:30 PM, Muenzinger Auditorium

Mask mandates are currently in place for campus auditoriums. Attendance will also be capped to allow for social distancing.

United States of America, 1940, in English, 90 min, 35mm

Story: Vicki Baum, Screenplay: Frank Davis, Director: Dorothy Arzner, Screenplay: Tess Slesinger, Cast: Maureen O'Hara, Lucille Ball, Louis Hayward, Virginia Field, Maria Ouspenskaya

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