Alive and Kicking

Alive and Kicking gives the audience an intimate, insider’s view into the culture of the current swing dance world while shedding light on issues facing modern American society.


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  • ★★★★★ review by Katinka on Letterboxd

    Their happiness makes me all giddy inside!

  • ★★★★ review by David Clayton on Letterboxd

    A fun documentary that left me smiling, tapping my feet and wishing I could dance. Susan Glatzer's film about the resurgence of swing since the mid-90's is an 88-minute treat for the senses. We get an assortment of talking heads from all over the world talking about their inspirations, how they discovered swing & in some cases, how it saved their lives. My favourite dance couple was Stephen and Chandrae - good-looking & energetic, some of their moves seemingly defied gravity. Augie's story was inspiring - as an Iraqi vet, he came home depressed and isolated, but dance turned his life around. The Swedish sisters bucked the male-female couple trend and they even found some of the original hoofers from the golden age of swing, the 1930's now teaching and just as surprised as many how the swing dance has come back. The film cites three reasons: the horrible 1993 film, Swing Kids, the better quirky indie 1996 film Swingers & those infectious Gap commercials of the late 90's - no, Brian Setzer Orchestra interviews here though. I love dance & musicals - this film, currently at 100% on the RT's - is a treat, light as a feather & fun to watch - will Oscar remember? Not likely - less than $100K at the box office and not Oscar fodder which loves to recognize much heavier topics like the Holocaust, war & people with disabilities. It's a breezy good time that has all the right moves.

  • ★★★★ review by kyliegallacher on Letterboxd

    Alive and Kicking is an uplifting documentary following the story of the life of swing dancing and it's affect on swing dancers. The documentary gives a brief outline of the birth of swing and how it continues to thrive. While I do wish to have a more in-depth look at the history of swing dancing, what I loved about the movie is the carefree feeling this film gave me. It shows the passion and love these dancers feel and how dancing has improved their lives. It shows fun dance scenes and overall a great film to put on to make you smile.

  • ★★★½ review by Dwayne Allen on Letterboxd

    Dare you to watch this and not smile

  • ★★★★★ review by Alannah Rose on Letterboxd

    I wasn't even planning to see this movie when I read about it in the montly schedule at my favorite local theater, but then I saw the trailer and knew I had to go. I found it really touching and I cried several times (no surprise), but it was also so human, inspiring and uplifting. There was a talk afterward with a couple who run local swing dancing classes and they were fantastic too (one of them was shown several times in the movie). Really great look into a subculture that is unfortunately overlooked for the cultural significance it holds.

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