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ReelTalk Movie Reviews
Time To Tap
by Betty Jo Tucker

Everyone loves to cheer for the underdog. If that underdog happens to be a wannabe tap dancer, Iím the loudest cheerleader of all. No wonder Iím so excited about Dance Baby Dance, written and directed by Stephen Kogon, who also plays the leading role in this delightful independent film. Movies about tap dancers donít come along too frequently nowadays (the last one was Make Your Move starring the great Derek Hough) -- so whenever one shows up, Iím a happy camper.

The plot is simple. Jimmy (Kogon) always wanted to be a successful tap dancer but an injury has confined him to an office occupation. Heís never lost his passion for tap dancing and now hopes to be chosen for a touring dance show. Although he has trouble with many of the steps needed for a top level performance, he hopes his love of the art will resonate with the audience. However, the competition for selection is fierce. Contestants represent various types of dance. Plus, awesome tapper Aaron De Wayne Williams just happens to be one of them.

The film follows Jimmy as he manages to practice while dealing with his supportive boss (Jim OíHeir), worried wife (Beverley Mitchell) and uncommunicative (at first) young niece, played by the darling Hayley Shukiar. Jimmy even works on his routines in the rain (Gene Kelly would be proud). And he gets a big surprise when discovering that his sullen niece is also a tap dancer. In fact, the numbers these two do together are terrific!   I wanted more.       

Kogon endows Jimmy with such likeability that we canít help wanting this guy to be successful. Do his dreams come true? Itís worth watching Dance Baby Dance to find out. Although a low-budget offering with less than perfect production values, this film makes up for that with its great heart and passion for dance.

Because Iím a former tap dancer myself, Dance Baby Dance motivated me to write the poem below.

Just tap tap tap that old time step.

Give it pizzazz and lots of pep!

Or shuffle off to Buffalo.

It feels so good if fast or slow.

 

Then shimmy with real style and grace.

Remember this is not a race.

Next do some wings like itís a dare.

Feet a-flyiní, hands circling air.

 

Tap dancing chases blues away.

It helps you get through every day.

So tap tap tap as time goes by.

ďDance Baby DanceĒ will make you try.

(Released by Indie Rights/Winds of Hope. Not rated by MPAA.)

For more information about Dance Baby Dance, go to the IMDb  website.


                                                                                                                                                                               
 
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