The Company (Sous-titres français) [Import]
The Company (Sous-titres français) [Import]
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Top Customer Reviews
The film is loosely structured and documentary-like. The viewer gets a a fly on the wall look at a dancer's life as Altman takes us behind the scenes, up close and personal. We watch both the professional and personal - from the grueling physical toll of constant practice to brilliant performances. The dancers' effort to perfect their mastery of dance is totally honest, and this artistic honesty really makes the film as special as a live performance. There are some spectacular dance performances throughout, with splendid colors, electric energy, creative costumes, and wonderful footwork which showcase the Joffrey Ballet Company. There's an opening modern piece where dancers leap across the stage with streamers, that is just fabulous. In another sequence a ballerina dances on and around a swing. Altman's camera emphasizes her grace and elegance, and this is one of the movie's high points for me.Read more ›
If you like Robert Altman, odds are good you will enjoy this film, although it is lighter on character development than much of his other work. If you are a serious fan of dance, you will enjoy this film for the attention it pays to the beauty of the art form. If you want a plot, particularly a standard love affair between Ry and her chef beau (James Franco), look elsewhere.
Through Altman's brilliant artistic direction, the audience is left to put the puzzle together, and piece the story together. Those who had watched 'Center Stage', and eagerly anticipated 'The Company' would have to watch this recent film with an entirely different frame of mind.
In 'Center Stage', the plot was convulated and sickeningly predictable topped with a script that is filled with deliberate dialogue that points out every plot twist and turn. The audience is TOLD what is happening and why through the characters' script. Conversely, 'The Company' makes a convincing attempt to create a realistic story, which is following a company's (yes, clichéd as it may be) trials and tribulations throughout a year. Realistic script and subtle details in exquisite camerawork result with the audience filling in the blanks and filling out the plot.
The fullness and richness of the plot is left to the audience to decipher from the details in 'The Company', unlike most dance movies that cater to a lazy mind. It helps to realise that the point of 'The Company' is to create an accurate portayal of the dance world, not a chick flick drama juxtaposed over the dance world.
The filmmaker's restrained approach gave the movie a sense of realness absent in conventional dramas, yet doesn't dilute it's power. After all, the events depicted really happened, and the dancers on screen are dancers in real life. The movie makes its points with small, finely-observed moments that says much. For example, when a star dancer snap her Achilles Tendon, she was quickly replaced. As she was carried off stage it seemed that's the last we will see of her since that injury effectively ends her career. But later at a public performance we see her limping to the side of the stage to watch her replacement dancing in her role.
The reasons for these people's tremendous dedication were never explicitly articulated in the movie. Some find this as a lack of depth. But I feel words are not necessary, nor adequate, to illustrate it. Simply take a look at the power and the grace the dancers display on stage, one would understand their passion and sacrifice.
As a bonus, the DVD has a worthwhile commentary track, in which Altman and Campell discuss the the actual Joffrey company and its dancers in relation to the movie. Interesting and informative.
Most recent customer reviews
This is more like a literary short story with video, as nothing is resolved and no one changes. But it's beautiful and a great look inside the backstage of a ballet / modern dance... Read morePublished 22 months ago by C. Cameron
I really couldn't come to care for any of the characters in this movie. The ballet is beautiful, especially the group performances. However, the actors failed to draw me in. Read morePublished on July 15 2004 by mamayokay
Well, it had to happen eventually. A Robert Altman film I truly dislike. I get the impression this ballet company film was way scaled down from a bloated romantic script and... Read morePublished on July 6 2004 by Guy De Federicis
This movie is about a ballet dancer, played by Neve Campbell, who wants to be noticed for her talent by her school. Read morePublished on July 4 2004 by Heather M
All right, there's no story, no plot. Not even really any characters. Fine. I can accept intellectually creative attempts of high art. Read morePublished on July 1 2004 by D.K.V.
The opening sequence is stunning. I have never seen a better record of the effort required by dancers - some shots are so vivid, that your own body responds to the movement shown... Read morePublished on June 26 2004 by Anne Terry
Directed by Robert Altman, this film is about a year in the life of the Joffrey Ballet of Chicago, which is the true star of the film. Read morePublished on June 18 2004 by Linda Linguvic