A Pittsburgh woman with two jobs as a welder and an exotic dancer wants to get into ballet school.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay) (as Tom Hedley), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
2,004 ( 63)

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Won 1 Oscar. Another 10 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Footloose (1984)
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A city teenager moves to a small town where rock music and dancing have been banned, and his rebellious spirit shakes up the populace.

Director: Herbert Ross
Stars: Kevin Bacon, Lori Singer, John Lithgow
Dirty Dancing (1987)
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Spending the summer at a Catskills resort with her family, Frances "Baby" Houseman falls in love with the camp's dance instructor, Johnny Castle.

Director: Emile Ardolino
Stars: Patrick Swayze, Jennifer Grey, Jerry Orbach
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A Brooklyn teenager feels his only chance to succeed is as the king of the disco floor. His carefree youth and weekend dancing help him to forget the reality of his bleak life.

Director: John Badham
Stars: John Travolta, Karen Lynn Gorney, Barry Miller
Ghost (1990)
Drama | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

After an accident leaves a young man dead, his spirit stays behind to warn his lover of impending danger, with the help of a reluctant psychic.

Director: Jerry Zucker
Stars: Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore, Whoopi Goldberg
Fame (1980)
Drama | Music | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A chronicle of the lives of several teenagers who attend a New York high school for students gifted in the performing arts.

Director: Alan Parker
Stars: Eddie Barth, Irene Cara, Lee Curreri
Grease (1978)
Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Good girl Sandy and greaser Danny fell in love over the summer. But when they unexpectedly discover they're now in the same high school, will they be able to rekindle their romance?

Director: Randal Kleiser
Stars: John Travolta, Olivia Newton-John, Stockard Channing
Sister Act (1992)
Comedy | Crime | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

When a worldly singer witnesses a mob crime, the police hide her as a nun in a traditional convent where she has trouble fitting in.

Director: Emile Ardolino
Stars: Whoopi Goldberg, Maggie Smith, Kathy Najimy
Pretty Woman (1990)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A man in a legal but hurtful business needs an escort for some social events, and hires a beautiful prostitute he meets... only to fall in love.

Director: Garry Marshall
Stars: Richard Gere, Julia Roberts, Jason Alexander
The Bodyguard (1992)
Action | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A former Secret Service agent takes on the job of bodyguard to a pop singer, whose lifestyle is most unlike a President's.

Director: Mick Jackson
Stars: Kevin Costner, Whitney Houston, Gary Kemp
Romance | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

In November 1958, the American teenager Katey Miller moves with her parents and her younger sister to Havana. Her father is an executive of Ford expatriated to Cuba, and Katey is an ... See full summary »

Director: Guy Ferland
Stars: Diego Luna, Romola Garai, Sela Ward
9½ Weeks (1986)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A woman gets involved in an impersonal affair with a man. She barely knows about his life, only about the sex games they play, so the relationship begins to get complicated.

Director: Adrian Lyne
Stars: Mickey Rourke, Kim Basinger, Margaret Whitton
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A married man's one-night stand comes back to haunt him when that lover begins to stalk him and his family.

Director: Adrian Lyne
Stars: Michael Douglas, Glenn Close, Anne Archer
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Philip Bruns ...
Frank Szabo (as Phil Bruns)
...
...
Secretary
Don Brockett ...
...
Durga McBroom ...
Edit

Storyline

Alex Owens is a female dynamo: steel worker by day, exotic dancer by night. Her dream is to get into a real dance company, though, and with encouragement from her boss/boyfriend, she may get her chance. The city of Pittsburgh co-stars. What a feeling! Written by Stewart M. Clamen <clamen@cs.cmu.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Every day, she works in a man's world. Every night, she dances through the universe that is her dream. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 April 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Electrodanza  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$94,900,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?


Goofs

When Alex and her friend are walking home and they encounter street dancers, there is a police car driving slowly in the background. When another dancer steps in the circle, the police car is farther back and again driving slowly towards them. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Nick: l'll tell you what. l'll give you the Cowboys and three.
Pete: Three and a half.
Nick: Take three, be happy.
Pete: Three and a half. l'm ecstatic.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Glee: Props (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Adagio for Strings
By Tomaso Albinoni (as Albinoni)
Arranged and Conducted by Lee Holdridge
Performed by London Symphony Orchestra
Courtesy of Varèse Sarabande Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Lively Popular Entertainment
14 January 2004 | by (Tunbridge Wells, England) – See all my reviews

In recent years there have been a number of British films based on the theme of working-class people who find fulfilment through their cultural activities; examples being Educating Rita (the first and most distinguished), Brassed Off, The Full Monty and Billy Elliott. Such films are frequently described as `quintessentially British' or `something that we can do and Hollywood can't', whereas the truth is that twenty years ago Hollywood was indeed making very similar films, mostly centred upon dancing, such as Saturday Night Fever, Dirty Dancing or Flashdance. Whereas these American films may not have had the covert (or, in the case of Brassed Off, highly overt) political message of their British counterparts, they nevertheless concentrated on differences in social class far more than Hollywood movies usually do.

The heroine of Flashdance, Alex, is a young woman who works as a welder and whose main joy in life is dancing. She moonlights as a dancer in a local nightclub, but her great ambition in life is to become a ballet dancer. The film tells the story of how she achieves that ambition, as well as the story of her romance with a wealthy middle-class divorcee, set against frequent dance sequences as Alex and her ice-skating friend Jeanie go through their paces. The climax comes with a scene in which she auditions for a place at a prestigious ballet academy and treats the judging committee to a bravura display of breakdancing. (Would a ballet school really be prepared to offer a place to a candidate whose dance skills owe more to the disco than to Swan Lake and who seems completely ignorant of balletic idiom?)

The film has its weak points. Although the plot is not as non-existent as some reviewers have felt, it nevertheless tends to take second place to the showpiece dance numbers; at times, it felt as if I were watching an extended series of pop videos. Potentially interesting themes are ignored; for example, Alex is a practising Catholic, but this seems to be a plot device to enable scenes set in the confessional to be used as soliloquies in which she can air her emotional problems. No attempt is made to explore the possible conflict between the demands of her religion and her sexually provocative dancing or her love for a divorcee.

The acting is undistinguished; Jennifer Beals makes an attractive and personable heroine, but it is clear why, despite the success of this film, she did not go on to become a major star. Her acting is too weak to enable her to carry a film; certainly I felt that she would be out of her depth in one that depends more upon plot and less upon song and dance. The other characters are little more than ciphers, with the exception of Hanna, the old lady who acts as Alex's mentor. I could certainly have done without the tasteless ethnic jokes told by Alex's comedian friend.

Yet, despite its faults, I enjoyed this film. Its redeeming feature is the zest and energy of its dance sequences, set to some well-chosen music such as Laura Branigan's Gloria or Irene Cara's title song. It may not be deep or significant, but it is an enjoyable, well-made piece of popular entertainment. 6/10.


42 of 74 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Anyone else get a migraine while watching this? digitalrep
Did Jennifer Beals do any of the dancing? kedem524
Flashdance controversy Southern_Chic_345
18??? gwynnethjean
Her body!! menzydasilva
the musical... kaye123
Discuss Flashdance (1983) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?