DVD Movie Guide @ dvdmg.com
Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main


Wayne Blair
Abigail Breslin, Colt Prattes, Bruce Greenwood, Sarah Hyland, Debra Messing
Writing Credits:
Jessica Sharzer

During a summer at a Catskills resort with her family, Frances "Baby" Houseman falls in love with the camp's dance instructor, Johnny Castle.

Rated TV-PG

Aspect Ratio: 1.78/16X9
English Dolby 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 129 min.
Price: $19.98
Release Date: 6/27/2017

• “The Legacy Live On” Featurette
• “Don’t Step on the 1, Start on the 2” Featurette
• Previews


Panasonic TC-P60VT60 60-Inch 1080p 600Hz 3D Smart Plasma HDTV; Sony STR-DG1200 7.1 Channel Receiver; Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player using HDMI outputs; Michael Green Revolution Cinema 6i Speakers (all five); Kenwood 1050SW 150-watt Subwoofer.


Dirty Dancing (2017)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (July 5, 2017)

30 years after the original film became a surprise hit, we get a 2017 TV adaptation of Dirty Dancing. Set in the summer of 1963, Dancing shows the Catskills vacation of “Baby” Houseman (Abigail Breslin) and her family.

Along the way, Baby meets Johnny Castle (Colt Prattes), a staff dancer. After she sees Johnny in action, she develops an interest in dancing, and this takes her toward personal lessons.

Naturally, this leads Baby to spend more one-on-one time with Johnny, who initially seems to dislike her. He sees her as a spoiled rich girl and resents her. Inevitably, they get to know each other better and develop a romantic relationship.

While not a literal remake of the 1987 film, the 2017 Dancing comes pretty close. It opens/concludes with shots that show Baby in 1975, and it also makes other character changes, most of which open up supporting parts like Baby’s parents, but these alterations feel fairly cosmetic.

Technically, the 2017 Dancing offers a musical, but don’t expect it to embrace the usual song and dance routines. While we do get occasional performances from the actors, these occur infrequently and don’t act to motivate the story. Characters sing with songs on the radio and perform at the resort’s talent night but they don’t create elements to move along the narrative.

If the 2017 film more fully embraced the musical genre, it might do enough to make its own name for itself. Since it uses music in a manner not unlike its predecessor, though, the 2017 version remains awfully similar to the original, and it does nothing to improve on that flick.

In terms of basic acting ability, I’d call it a draw between the two films, as both offer good talent. However, the 1987 actors suited their roles better and seemed like a stronger fit.

This becomes especially true for the leads. Breslin simply feels wrong as Baby, and Prattes lacks any real charm.

At no point in his career did Patrick Swayze threaten to become a great actor, but he offered charisma that Prattes can’t provide. Prattes seems surly and churlish, characteristics that make it difficult for the audience to embrace him. While Swayze and Jennifer Grey created a good connection, Breslin and Prattes fail to deliver any form of chemistry at all.

All of this makes the 2017 Dancing a curiously pointless endeavor. It feels intended to capitalize on goodwill toward the 1987 film while all involved exert as little effort as they can.

With a more creative approach, an updated Dirty Dancing might’ve become enjoyable. The 2017 edition does little more than recreate its predecessor with much less success, so it becomes a waste of time.

The DVD Grades: Picture A-/ Audio B/ Bonus C-

Dirty Dancing appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.78:1 on this single-sided, double-layered DVD; the image has been enhanced for 16X9 televisions. For SD-DVD, the picture looked great.

This meant consistently good sharpness. Inevitably, the format’s restrictions meant a little softness in wide shots, but most of the movie offered strong delineation and accuracy. No issues with jaggies or shimmering materialized, and I saw no edge haloes or source flaws.

Colors tended toward orange and teal. Trite as those choices might be, they came across with positive fidelity. Blacks looked deep and dark, while shadows seemed smooth. This became a terrific SD-DVD presentation.

Though not as good, the movie’s Dolby Digital 5.1 audio seemed more than acceptable. The soundscape favored music, so the score and songs spread across the five channels in an involving manner.

Given the movie’s emphasis on characters, effects didn’t have much to do. Still, environmental material added a little to the proceedings and filled out the room in a satisfying manner.

Audio quality appeared fine. Speech was natural and concise, while music seemed full and rich. Effects offered perfectly acceptable range and accuracy. This became a satisfactory soundtrack.

The DVD includes two featurettes. The Legacy Lives On runs 13 minutes, 25 seconds and offers notes from executive producer Allison Shearmur, screenwriter Jessica Sharzer, director Wayne Blair, music producer Adam Anders, casting director Tamara Notcutt, costume designer Lisa Padovani, and actors Abigail Breslin, Colt Prattes, Sarah Hyland, Bruce Greenwood, Debra Messing, Nicole Scherzinger and Katey Sagal.

“Legacy” looks at original and its adaptation, story/characters, music, cast and performances, and costumes. “Legacy” brings us a superficial but passable overview of production topics.

Don’t Step on the 1, Start on the 2 lasts nine minutes, 40 seconds and features Breslin, Prattes, Blair, Shearmur, Scherzinger, and choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler. As expected, “Step” looks at the movie’s choreography. It offers another decent summary.

The disc opens with ads for La La Land and Dirty Dancing (1987).

As an update, the 2017 Dirty Dancing lacks much purpose. While it makes some changes, it seems redundant and free from much charm. The DVD delivers excellent visuals along with acceptable audio and minor supplements. The original Dirty Dancing remains engaging but the pointless remake flops.

Viewer Film Ratings: 1 Stars Number of Votes: 2
0 3:
View Averages for all rated titles.

Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main