Independent film studio Film Movement resurrected the vintage documentary I Am A Dancer this year. Re-issued on Blu-ray and DVD on Sept. 22, the 92 minute (on hour, 32-minute) documentary is an interesting but imperfect presentation. Its profile of legendary ballet dancer Rudolph Nureyev serves as an appealing introduction to the fame figure. At the same time, the approach to the profile in question is such that audiences will find it problematic. This will be addressed a little later. The documentary’s average price point makes for its own appeal. When it is considered with the documentary’s primary presentation, the two elements join to make the presentation such that ballet aficionados will find the vintage documentary worth watching at least occasionally.
I Am A Dancer is a work that will appeal primarily to the most devoted ballet aficionados. That is because the vintage documentary, re-issued in September by Film Movement, give those audiences a glimpse into the man who is among the most elite figures in the ballet world. It offers this glimpse through footage of Nureyev at work in the dance studio. Audiences get to see Nureyev’s dedication to his art and his versatility, working on classical and modern dance styles. Along the way, audiences are also treated to some insight from those who were close to Nureyev as to who he was. One dancer noted in her audio commentary, that Nureyev allegedly was known for having mood swings, but even with that, was still a respected figure because he was still mostly happy. Audiences also learn from the narration about the circumstances of Nureyev’s birth and his familiarity with traveling and working. There are also insights into the featured performance segments in the narration, which will help keep the noted audiences engaged and entertained. Audiences even get to see Nureyev in the dressing room as he prepares to perform. It continues to show the man at work in all of his focus. Between everything noted here and more, it becomes clear that the primary presentation of I Am A Dancer is certain to engage and entertain the noted audiences.
For all that the primary presentation does to help this vintage documentary’s presentation, the execution thereof is something that the noted audiences will agree is somewhat problematic. That is because what audiences get here is, as noted, more a glimpse than a full profile of the legendary dancer. Yes, audiences are treated to some in-depth clips of Nureyev at work on stage and screen, and in the rehearsal room, but the problem is that it is mostly that. Yes, the insight about his birth is there, but even the bonus content that is featured with this re-issue does not necessarily add much to the whole. So again, what audiences get is just something brief, in the bigger picture. It’s not a full profile outlining the roots of Nureyev’s career. At the most, viewers get fleeting mentions of those roots. Whether one is a ballet aficionado or just an observer, one cannot deny that this detracts from the presentation. Without that extra content, this whole really just come across as a simple look at the legend at work more than a full profile of a legend.
Keeping in mind the primary content featured in this vintage documentary and the presentation thereof, the documentary’s average price point makes it at least somewhat more appealing for viewers. Using listings featured at Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart, and Barnes & Noble Booksellers – it was not listed through Target and Books-A-Million at the time of this review’s posting – the presentation’s average price point comes to $23.97 on Blu-ray and $17.30 on DVD. In other words, the prior comes in at less than $25 while the latter totals less than $20. Amazon provided the least expensive listing for each platform at $14.00 (Blu-ray) and $14.95 (DVD) while Walmart claims the most expensive listing for each platform at $29.95 (BD) and $19.95 (DVD). Simply put, at its least expensive, the set barely touches the $15 mark and at its most expensive comes in at $30. That the noted audiences can get the documentary at that noted low price makes for its own appeal, especially considering everything else addressed here. All things considered, I Am A Dancer proves to be a work that is worth watching at least once at the lowest price.
Film Movement’s recently re-issued presentation of the vintage documentary I Am A Dancer is an intriguing presentation. It gives a good glimpse into the man who was the legendary dancer Rudolph Nureyev. While it serves as a good starting point on a look into his legacy, the way in which it was presented proves somewhat problematic. It detracts, to a point, from the overall presentation. Keeping all of that in mind, the documentary’s average price point makes for at least some more appeal. Each item noted is important in its own way to the whole of this documentary’s re-issue. All things considered, it proves itself worth at least the occasional watch.
More information on this and other titles from Film Movement is available at:
To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.