Given that nearly every scene in this movie was reproduced verbatim,* I can only conclude that the reason for remaking this classic was to save today’s teenagers from the heavy synthesizer soundtrack of the original. The new Ren and Ariel do not have the–and I can’t believe I’m saying this–gravitas of Kevin Bacon and Lori Singer, and Dennis Quaid and Andie MacDowell are no John Lithgow and Dianne Wiest,** but I greatly enjoyed this movie. Setting this version in the South was a brilliant move and it’s so true to the original that it’s fun to see the “quotes” of the original movie sprinkled throughout in costumes, props and dance moves.***
*Footloose was the first movie I saw without my parents. In fourth grade I went with Angie Fuller after school on a very rainy day and we were quite scandalized by the language. My family had the VHS tape growing up and at one point my brother astutely observed that we missed a lot of the jokes the first several times through due to being too young to understand them. Viewing this film, I was very pleased when the MTV films logo popped onto the screen because if anyone currently does teen movies well, it’s them.
**I did particularly enjoy the increase in Ren’s Uncle, Wes Warniker’s character. He was great.
***However, there is much to discuss in the small changes. Original Footloose fans, let’s discuss the changes and which were effective.