Gaywatch: Why I won’t be cutting “Footloose” again
By Tim Parks
Oh, don’t even get me started on the “Footloose” remake! Or rather, please do, and there’s no need to poke me with a stick to prod me, I am always good to go. On second thought, that sounds dirty, and there’s a clear cut example of why my mind is unable to survive outside of the gutter; I am to inappropriate what Charlie Sheen is to being an upright citizen. Ok, enough with a SAT self diagnosis, we’ve got business to get down to, as in cutting loose, everybody cut “Footloose,” if you will. Or, in my case, I am going to tear it a new… I am sure that you understand my inference. Wow! A big 50 cent word.
Redo It For Me One More Time?
On paper, the redo sounds more like it will cut the cheese (“winning!), than cutting anything else. I mean both Zac Efron and Chace Crawford turned down the chance to take on Kevin Bacon, which was (for once) a good choice for those thespians. Show of hands, who went to a theater and saw either “Charlie St. Cloud” or “Twelve?” Oh, you are sooo lying .
Ok, let’s back up…I meant the chance for those actors to tackle the iconic 1984 role of Ren McCormack that had Kevin shakin’, well, his Bacon, all set against the backdrop of a small town where dancing and music were a big no-no. Really? Last time I checked it was 2011 and we lived in the age of the worldwide web, where you can download this thing known as music.
Now, Kenny Wormald is Ren (no ya ain’t) and his surname just trips off the tongue, doesn’t it? While Julianne Hough, you know Ryan Seacrest’s “girlfriend” (as in she’s a girl and she’s his friend, to paraphrase Jon Cryer in “Pretty in Pink”) is the “new” Lori Singer as the spitfire preacher’s daughter Ariel Moore. What, was the old one busy? Nope, unless you count career obscurity as a full-time job (see I can give and take, but we won’t go there) And, I am so on board with that bit of casting (rolling of eyes). She should stick to her Proactiv commercials – I wonder, does that not only help acne, but also remove facial hair, like beards? Oh yes, I did.
On the subject of the fictional family tree, Dennis Quaid plays Reverend Shaw Moore (previously portrayed by John Lithgow). Dennis, if I may address you informally and give you a wee bit of career advice? You needn’t take every single role they throw your way; you’re sliding into the Samuel L. Jackson I’ll-do-it-for-the-mortgage-payment school of acting. You’re better than that, and certainly more memorable in “Far From Heaven” than you’ve been in about the last few years of your career. There, now don’t you feel better, I know I do, and, really that’s all that counts in the end.
Andie MacDowell will portray his wife Vi Moore (in place of the incomparable Dianne Wiest). Funny, ole Andie doesn’t look old enough to have a 23-year-old daughter, which is Hough’s real age. Oops, I meant a daughter in high school ,whatever. At least that’s what her L’Oreal “age defying” commercials would have us believe – I’m sure she hasn’t had any work done to her face. No. Really. I’m. Totally. Serious. You can Google her name and see for yourselves what the first item that pops up about her, it rhymes with spastic perjury; I’m just sayin’.
And poor , poor Ziah Colon (hope it’s pronounced Cologne) is stepping into the pre-Manolo Blahniks first walked in by Sarah Jessica Parker as Rusty, and may have marked the first time that SJP uttered the word “fabulous” onscreen. Good luck, new girl, good luck.
Yes, the movie will retain some famous scenes, including the tough-guys-do-dance-while-blowing-off-steam scene in the mill (so butch) that was a standout in the original. But…how will a chicken fight with school buses work, rather than the tractors in the original? Not very well is my guess. And the 2011 model Ren will still drive the crappy yellow VW, just like Bacon did, (ha ha).
But, a bigger question begs to be asked – will there be the underlying sexual tension that Bacon shared with late actor Chris Penn’s Willard character? “Let’s Hear It For The Boyfriends,” was more like it. See this for confirmation of that last statement…http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KN2tw9Bs9uA Although the scene with Ren’s first day of school, when they meet in the hall and Ren’s eyes roam run up and down Willard’s, um, presence, was a tip off, too.
Will there be any spark between new Willard, Miles Teller, and Wormald? It’s not like it’s going to save the movie or anything. And, you know Mr. Wormald, they change names in Hollywood all the time! Just ask your co-star Ms. Colon, or not, as the case may be.
Not Music To My Queer Ears
Which brings us to the soundtrack with Blake Shelton belting out the title track, as sure as he likes to belt back the cocktails, since Kenny Loggins was “unavailable” to reprise his version (see previous Lori Singer comment). If that weren’t exciting enough, the soundtrack has a stable of “well-known musical artists,” such as Jana Kramer (?) and Ella Mae Brown (??) who will literally cover “Let’s Hear It For The Boy” and “Holding Out For A Hero,” respectively. Oh, and there’s a bunch of new songs for us to, what’s the word? Enjoy? Sure, I’ll go with that in the case of tracks like “Little Lovin’” by Lissie. What no “Dancing In The Sheets” ala Shalamar, circa the like, totally awesome 1984 soundtrack? Wait that’s a good thing.
Anyhoo, shame on you, new “Footloose” soundtrack, shame. Couldn’t they cough up some extra coin for Katy Perry or someone we’ve actually heard of, at the very least? What’s that you say? They actually roped Cee Lo Green into partaking, I have a feeling he’ll be saying the dirtier version of “Forget You” to that choice.
Cut. Print. That’s A Wrap!
Look, I am not trying to come off like some old guy, with a garden hose at-the-ready and a shout of “Hey, you kids, get off my lawn!” Although I realize that 42 is ancient in gay years, at least that’s what Internet websites have taught me over the years.
But, I digress (no!)…it’s just that sometimes, some things, say, like remaking “Footloose,” as a for instance (really, no, seriously!), are just better left alone. I just have fond memories of the original, for a multitude of reasons over the years; first and foremost that as a gay teen I could inspire some Podunk town to free themselves from their repressive shackles by dancing in a decorated mill. I would have spearheaded the committee of with a battle cry of “We need more glitter,” naturally. Or I just really love the first one, and what will most likely be, the better of the great “Footloose” debate. I have a feeling the new one could do well enough, but will suck regardless (wish I knew how to form an opinion, sigh).
And, take note, all of you Tinsel Town Types (say that three times fast!) don’t even think of toying with an update of “Grease,” ok? Alright, I need to sign off and go water my lawn…hey wait a second! Oh well, you’ve been duly warned kids. Until next time, that’s all of the news that’s fit to print.