Tuesday, May 22, 2012
One major critique of the musical has always been that it's unrealistic, unsubstantiated fluff. People don't really sing and dance at the drop of a hat (or do they?). Life isn't really like that. And maybe none of us have tap danced around a mid century luxury cruise liner, but that doesn't mean there isn't truth in the above scene. For me it's in watching Mitzi Gaynor and Donald O'Connor dance.
I've always appreciated dancers and what they're able to accomplish through mere strength of will. It's beautiful. It's effortless. And yet everything in the above scene is the result of intense practice and physical strain.
Musical numbers may not be true to the established film rules that determine what is 'realistic' and what isn't. They're true to the idea that when you push through pain, when you tell yourself that you aren't going to give up, maybe you can create something beautiful.