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Take the Lead (2006)

Antonio Banderas , Rob Brown , Liz Friedlander  |  PG-13 |  DVD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (258 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Antonio Banderas, Rob Brown, Yaya Dacosta
  • Directors: Liz Friedlander
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: New Line Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: August 29, 2006
  • Run Time: 118 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (258 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000FUTVLY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,764 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Take the Lead" on IMDb

Special Features

  • 7 deleted scenes
  • 3 Behind-the-Dance featurettes
  • "You Take the Lead" - Interactive Tango demonstration
  • 3 trailers remixed by internationally known DJs

Editorial Reviews

Inspired by a true story, Antonio Banderas stars as internationally acclaimed ballroom dancer Pierre Dulane in the energetic and moving film Take The Lead. When Dulane volunteers to teach dance in the New York public school system, his background first clashes with his students' tastes...but together they create a completely new style of dance.

DVD Features:
Audio Commentary
Music Clips


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
94 of 99 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Flaws and all, I enjoyed it! April 30, 2006
I agree with many of the reviewers that "Take the Lead" could have benefitted with more dance and less "action". I agree that the plotline's been done before....inspirational teacher arrives at a tough school in a tough situation, is initially mistrusted by a cast of student characters, and prevails because he/she really cares to show up, to teach, and to provide an example and inspiration to the students. Yeah, Sidney Poitier did it, yeah, Michelle Pfeiffer did it, Robin Williams - but still, the story of Pierre Dulaine is real, and it is compelling. And the current ballroom dance "craze" allowed it to be brought to the screen.

Banderas always brings it to his films. He's somewhat of a caricature; the hot, smoky Spaniard with the true heart. I choose to believe his public persona, that he's like this in real life, as well. Banderas is more than fine as Pierre Dulaine - he has a light, believable touch. He inspires. It feels as though making this movie was not just another job, another role to him. I think that quality in Banderas is like the indefinable charm that Hugh Jackman brings to a role....and it's why they're as successful on stage as they are on screen. They're living it.

His student cast - a permanent, multicultural cast of detention junkies (why Yaya Dacoste as LahRette is in detention is anybody's guess), including Rob Brown as Rock (he was good here, fantastic in Finding Forrester), is quirky but endearing (yes, that's a tired clich?, from movies and TV as well).

Dulaine's got a somewhat successful dance studio; he's a widower, his life is busy but not full and these kids strike a chord with him.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 4 1/2 stars : inspirational and entertaining June 1, 2006
Format:DVD
If I had to describe this movie, I'd call this a mix between the basics of Dirty Dancing : Havana Nights (it combines different types of dancing, Take the lead mixes hip hop and ballroom dancing) and Dangerous minds/Sister Act 2 (in the way the teacher tries to inspire students).

The movie is based on a true story. Mr.Dulane (Antonio Banderas), a ballroom dancer with his own teaching studio, decides to become a detention supervisor in an inner-city school, and then to inspire and teach these kids trust and hope (among others) through ballroom dancing. In exchange, of course, these kids teach him a little something as well. Antonio Banderas is great and is believeable as a ballroom dancer/teacher. The supporting cast also helps carry the movie and does an amazing job.

I really enjoyed this movie. It's an inspirational story, but it also manages to keep clear of corniness and still be entertaining thanks to Banderas' great performance, but also in large part thanks to the dancing and the mix of different styles of music. There's funny parts, there are dramatic parts, it has all the makings of a good movie, and it succeeds, even though I thought it lost its pace once or twice, but nothing the movie doesn't recover from.
I also liked the fact that while it reaches wide audiences, it also has an underlying message, criticizing today's society for setting up a certain outcasting of inner-city schools. But not to worry, the movie has no political agenda, it's all underlying. It's an inspirational movie that's made for entertaining the audience, not beating them on the head with criticism, and in that sense the movie does exactly what it's meant to do.

I highly recommend this movie. (And if you enjoyed this one, you'll probably enjoy "Save The Last Dance", and vice-versa)
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Take The Lead Leads The Pack January 16, 2007
Format:DVD
Inspired by a true story, this film does not make a saint out of the main character who does make a few missteps as he judges people without really knowing them at times, but his heart is in the right place. Except for Banderas and Woodard who are stars in their own right and perform well here, this film is also dominated by a number of unknowns who are very convincing in their roles. This film does not shy away from the tragedies some of these inner city youths experience everyday of their lives as we witness one girl nearly assualted by a "customer" of her prostitute mother and one boy who witnessed his brother's death and his father's descent into alcoholism. None of these are pretty pictures and none of these problems are solved at the end of the film.

In addition, a fair commentary is made about the way many view our education system both by the public and those in the system. In this film that commentary is embodied in a math teacher who won't cover his after school detention time as he views those kids as losers not worthy of his time and he'd rather be teaching kids that care about what he has to say. How sad that is. I have been teaching for 16 years now and while I enjoy it, I don't do it because my "audience" cares. Wow, that sounds like an awfully big ego trip to only want to teach to the elite of the school; I hate to admit that I know such teachers. One thing I've learned in my time in education is that the moment students (any child) say that they don't need you, then that's when they need you the most. Ironically, this very same teacher turns in the principal later for conducting the dance classes instead of trying to teach the students. Hmmmm . . . Didn't he say they weren't worthy of being taught?
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