Rebels on Pointe is the first-ever, cinéma vérité documentary film celebrating Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo -- the all male, drag ballet company founded over 40 years ago on the ...
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Macdara Ó Fátharta,
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Harry Lister Smith
Rebels on Pointe is the first-ever, cinéma vérité documentary film celebrating Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo -- the all male, drag ballet company founded over 40 years ago on the heels of New York's Stonewall riots. The company has performed in over 500 cities and 33 countries, and has a cult following around the world. The film juxtaposes exclusive, behind-the-scenes access and intimate, character-driven stories of its dancers, highlighted by amazing performances shot around the world. Rebels on Pointe ultimately celebrates our shared humanity through universal themes of identity, dreams, family, love, loss, determination and resilience... proving that a ballerina is not merely a woman dancing, but an act of revolution in a tutu.
Rebels on Pointe (2017) was written and directed by Bobbi Jo Hart. The film is about the male dance company Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo. What makes the men in the company rebels is that they dance en pointe. In any other ballet company, only the ballerinas dance en pointe. The men dance beautifully, they lift and twirl the ballerinas, but they never dance en pointe.
The problem with Ballets Trockadero for me is that they are a comedy dance group. So, in essence, what they are saying is, "Yes, we dance en pointe. We can do this, but not for a serious ballet. We have to pretend to be clumsy and inept." I wish there were a male ballet company that danced en pointe, and looked beautiful and serious doing it. Apparently, that ballet company doesn't exist.
However, we can't be critical of the documentary because we don't like the concept of the subject of the movie. Director Hart does a good job getting us inside the ballet company, and showing us some of the performers as individuals, not just dancers. It's a documentary worth seeing, and it will work almost as well on the small screen.
We saw this film at Rochester's excellent Little Theatre. It was shown as part of the outstanding ImageOut, the Rochester LGBT Film Festival. Unless you are an intensely serious ballet fan, the movie deserves your attention.
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