“Feel the Beat.” A Feel Good Movie

Miah-Reese Govan, Staff Reporter

In Netflix Original Feel the Beat, a small town girl attempting to make it in the Broadway world has her career threatened by a video gone viral. In an effort to salvage her career, the main character decides to travel back to her hometown to enter a group of young dance students into a competition that could make or break her strive to success as a professional dancer. Throughout her experience with these students, the main character learns the value of commitment and relationships with people you care for.

Going into this movie, I had assumed the film would be cringey and childish. I normally enjoy shows and movies that include dancing, however most films that imitate dancers’ lives usually have a really absurd plot, or a basic comeback story after the main character is presented with a career threatening injury. After viewing the movie, I was glad that the film consisted of amazing character growth, and a variety of skills shown by the actors. However, the rule of Chekhov’s gun was not used to its full potential so a few key points in the plot were down-played to a disappointing degree, leaving me confused as to why those pieces were included in the plot all together.

To start, the movie Feel the Beat consisted of captivating characters whose’ growth was shown throughout the movie. In the movie, the main character, April, was a self serving and rude person. However she slowly begins to develop a more caring and self sacrificing personality when she begins teaching the amateur dance students. As the story continues, April’s past is slowly revealed causing the reader to empathize with her character. Additionally, the students in the movie are diverse, and consists of a deaf student played by Shaylee Mansfield. Noticing all of the different characters was pleasing, considering the dance world has certain unofficial standards when it comes to dancers’ looks and health. 

Moving along, there was a great assortment of skills displayed in the movie that I believe helped make the movie as good as it was. Since a deaf character was played in the movie, almost all of the actors casted had to learn American Sign Language (ASL). On top of that, the actors had to learn how to perform multiple dances in various styles. I felt that child actor Kai Zen showcased amazing talent during one of the most endearing scenes in the movie, and actor Sophia Carson, who also played Evie in the movie Descendants also showed an astounding level of dance skills, that I could never perform without years of dance lessons.

In spite of these film qualities, I rated the movie the way that I did because although the movie’s main conflict was resolved by the end of the movie, other sub conflicts were not addressed. This left me to make my own assumptions on the various topics that were left up in the air. For example, two characters in the movie were supposed to have a conversation that was major for one of the dance students. However, the conversation was never addressed and the story continued with the normal conflict. This left me confused, as to why that important piece was downplayed and forgotten about. This point in the movie would have made the storyline a lot better than it was, so this misuse of the rule of Chekhov’s Gun was a huge letdown that was a key factor in my rating of this movie.

In general, I would rate the movie Feel the Beat with 3.5 stars because it was a fun movie that contained great character growth, and an assortment of different skills that brought the movie to life. Despite its misuse of the rule of Chekhov’s Gun, I really enjoyed this movie, although I don’t think that a middle aged person that enjoys action and thrillers would enjoy this movie as much as I did. On the contrary, if you and your family are looking for a fun movie to cease quarantine boredom, this movie would definitely be for you.