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Fred Astaire movies


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Most people watched Astaire because they loved to see him dance. In his day, he was considered to be the greatest dancer in the world.

 

My father watched his old movies on TV and watched his live TV specials because he liked Tap Dancing.

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> {quote:title=Battleborn wrote:}{quote}

> I can't, for the life of me, understand people who would watch his movies.

 

Because Fred's movies are fun, innocent and a visual escape to the daily doldrums.

 

The bigger question is why people enjoy watching others dance. On a psychological level, as humans, we are hunters. Our eyes are engaged by a moving object, not unlike a dog seeing a bolting cat or squirrel. (notice all the moving logos and floating words in commercials?) And Astaire was an exceptional dancer.

 

That one New Years Eve TCM showed Astaire/Rogers marathon of films, a group of my party guests were glued to my TV, just mesmerized by the dancing. I was surprised how many people weren't familiar with those old corny films and how much they enjoyed watching them. (and they wonder why I love the old b&w movies!)

When Astaire dances in a movie, even my golden retriever gets up and puts her nose right to the tube. And she doesn't even get the jokes.

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It would have been very difficult being anti-homosexual in the film/dance industry & get along with your peers. Fred loved the ladies, was one of the best dancers in films & what possible difference would his likes & dislikes, of any subject, have to do with his performances? Sounds as if you just wanted to start an argument...

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> {quote:title=TikiSoo wrote:}{quote}

> The bigger question is why people enjoy watching others dance. On a psychological level, as humans, we are hunters. Our eyes are engaged by a moving object, not unlike a dog seeing a bolting cat or squirrel.

 

You might be interested in researching "mirror neurons" -- they're the part of the brain that makes you feel like you're doing what you're seeing. Most people like watching others dance or play games because it gives them a sense that they're also doing it.

 

I'm not one of those people. Dancing, football, etc. all leave me cold. But FA was a more-than-adequate actor outside of his routines, and I enjoy most of his movies despite the footwork.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It's important to remember an artist for their body of work rather than for their political or personal opinions. Astaire is the dancer par excellence that all who came after him sought most to emulate. Gene Kelly is often referred to in the context of the "Astaire-not" the antithesis of Astaire's grace and polish. You can't really compare the two men because their styles are so unique, verging on being direct opposites. Astaire's movements are fluid - Kelly's athletic. Astaire is the essence of a graceful man about town - Kelly is the vigorous man of the people. Both have their merits and deserve their due, but neither can be accurately compared. A quick viewing of their only professional teaming together in The Babbit and the Bromide section from Ziegfeld Follies illustrates how each was the very picture of perfection through dance - depending on your point of view.

 

Now, about this business of boycotting Astaire movies because Astaire was 'anti-homosexual'. First up, I have read several biographies on the life and times of Fred Astaire. While it is true that he did not 'believe' in homosexuality as a lifestyle, he was never openly anti-gay. In his only public statement on the issue Astaire simply stated that he had never considered homosexuality as a personal lifestyle.

 

Every heterosexual man or woman could say as much. Are we all to be condemned for that view. If you're a man and like other men - congrats and good for you. Astaire was not advocated that you should not or were somehow less than for doing so. He simply didn't feel that homosexuality was a lifestyle he himself could willingly embrace.

 

Finally, I think it's important to recognize that one need not be anti or pro anything to enjoy work by artists who are either gay or straight. The gifts artists give to the world are universal - and not exclusive. As example, I'll close by saying that I enjoy listening to Liberace's gifted piano solos from time to time even though I would never want to go to bed with the man himself - only perhaps, with his music!

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