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Hailed as "Fame for the new millenium", I only have one thing to say: Fame holds nothing compared to Centre Stage.

Centre Stage
Centre Stage feels like an 80’s movie to me. It has that pure fun, without the guilty pleasure of a 90’s flick. It probably helps that it is a dance movie, which were primarily done in the 80’s and done well too. I didn’t think it was possible to make a new, hip movie like the 80’s predecessor’s just as good or perhaps better...well here it is! The only difference is the updated wardrobes and the conceived societal views. It also must be noted that Centre Stage was the reviver of the dance film craze with films following such as Save The Last Dance and Bring It On(dancey cheerleaders). It does have some old cliches and stereotypes, not oscar worthy acting (being that most of the principal cast made up of professional dancers) and some soggy plot lines...but like the new revived movies above it deals with them in mostly fresh and different ways. I particularly like how real it becomes backstage, I have been to some dance recitals and they have been very close to these in the picture. It is also great to see the actor’s(dancers) actually dance, you can always spot the body double.

The plot is simple: Jodie Sawyer (Amanda Schull), a dancer hopeful, auditions for the American Ballet Academy and gets accepted. It is there she meets fellow accepted students Eva (Zoe Saldana), Maureen (Susan May Pratt), Charlie (Sascha Radetsky), and yada yada others, and this is where the movie really begins. All of them go through the grueling trials and tribulations of dancing and the huge competitiveness of this artistic sport. Basically they all compete to be signed with the director’s,  Jonathan (Peter Gallagher), ballet company and work towards the concert that shows their talent. Along the way love for Jodie blossoms with a professional dancer Cooper (Ethan Stiefel) and jealousy becomes apparent with Charlie. What follows is some comedy, some drama and some awesome dance sequence that would even impress the footy dad. Centre Stage is really about believing in yourself and as corny as that it really a bad message? I think not!

Overall I found this to be a very pleasing, clean transfer with just some little annoying habits here and there. Right at the start the picture I was worried. There was dust and grain, way too much for my liking and it lacked the clarity that was needed. But then after the credits it stopped and became a beautiful transfer with vibrant and toned colours without a hint of over saturation. Shadow detail was great with blacks being spot on. There was a tiny bit of aliasing, but no artefacts to be spotted. I only  found some clarity or sharpness problems, I had to squint a little, at the end of the movie where Jodie is in the room with Jonathan (not giving anything away). Other than that, a tad grain etc, a great Columbia Tristar transfer.

Centre Stage
I thought that Centre stage would use quite a lot of bass and would give my subwoofer some exercise, but I was surprised that it didn’t have that much, other than the music from the film’s soundtrack. It isn’t as impressive as I thought it would be. But watching the movie it makes sense and seems impressive when watching. It is one of those illusions, maybe not that impressive when singled out, but in the context of the film it works perfectly. Audio sync is perfect, there are no drop-outs or clicks, and the volume is spot on. The surround usage in context are quite good and used to their advantage and when the rear speakers ARE used they are very effective.

Director’s Audio Commentary (Nicholas Hytner): Nicholas is quite a treat to listen to, he has excitement and alot of tales to tell about the movie. I liked going to the last dance sequence where Jodie changes all her outfit on stage with a rise of a camera - and listening to his explanation.

Extended Dance sequences: I don’t find Ballet very exciting and also the fact that it doen’t include Jodie or Charlie in it I just wasn’t interested. The transfer is quite good and if you like it, you will like it. It features Swan Lake, Romeo & Juliet and Stars & Stripes.

Deleted Scenes: This is my gripe for the day...Why oh why do the studios tease us with deleted scenes. It isn’t enough to dribble cut scenes throughout the trailers but then to place a picture on the deleted scenes page of an actual deleted scene and then not include that scene on the deleted scenes feature. It makes no sense to me. They also did this with the Empire records DVD. The scene in question is a scene with Jodie and Charlie on the boat where Charlie says he likes her in a round-about way, which would’ve been a good one. But anyway the two scenes we are left with are Cooper in rehearsal flirting with Jodie and Charlie showing his stuff at a lesson. Not that exciting, but always good to have. Quality isn’t that great though.

Music Video- Mandy Moore "I Wanna Be With You": This catchy little songs works really well in the film and is a pleasant extra included. It also has Charlie in it aswell...and not just scenes from the movie either, he specially filmed dances for this video.

Behind-the-scenes Featurette: Very Promo-ish and not very insightful. It could’ve been WAY better, and Amanda Schull looks like she just got out of bed. But there is still interviews and it isn’t boring.

Isolated Track: Just the usual.

Talent Profiles: Where is the dancers profiles?? After all they do make up the principle only provides  profiles of the actor’s whoc can’t really dance.

Trailer: A Full screen trailer that is really quite good in quality and quantity.

Centre Stage
Many people say this is a very average movie, but they can’t understand why they like it so much. Which I find very contradictory cause I think it is a great movie because I want to watch it so much...isn’t that a sign that a movie is good?? Centre Stage is lethally addictive and a very enthusiastic, fun film. It is enjoyable by a large audience and a great gem to have in your collection, it is one of my favourites. It also has a great transfer, solid sound and extra’s that are quite good. Give Centre Stage a spin.