Directed By: Craig Brewer

Starring: Kenny Wormald, Julianne Hough, Andie MacDowell, and Dennis Quaid

In X-Men: First Class, Kevin Bacon's character Sebastian Shaw has the ability to absorb energy and preserve his youth.  If Bacon could use this mutant power in real life, I would certainly drink to that.  We could have definitely used his talent in Footloose, this newly released remake of this 1984 hit.  There's no doubt that Craig Brewer's remake of Footloose is fun and enjoyable, but there are some awkward moments because Brewer is indecisive about a crucial creative choice—whether to modernize the original or to remain true to this 80s flick in this interpretation. 

Ren MacCormack (Kenny Wormald) has just arrived in the small town of Bomont and is not a fan of its stuffy culture.  This Boston native moves in with his uncle Wes Warnicker (Ray McKinnon) after his mother passes away from leukemia.  He soon finds out that the town of Bomont is basically run by Reverend Shaw Moore (Dennis Quaid) whose church is central to the town's culture and politics; the small town preacher's sermons influence every aspect of town life even music and dance.

Several years ago, five drunk teens coming from a party die in a tragic car accident.  Bobby Moore (Blair Jasin), the reverend's son, is one of the dead teens.  In dealing with a grief with which no parent should ever have to deal, Rev. Moore takes harsh action to make sure that no other parent in Bomont has to deal with that type of pain again.  As an influential member of the town council, he votes to ban dancing and playing loud music in public.  New to the antiquated small town, Ren has a problem with the ridiculous laws of Bomont and takes action to make his final days in high school a whole lot more fun.  Meanwhile, Rev. Moore's daughter Ariel (Julianne Hough) takes an interest in Ren against her father's wishes.

Footloose has some serious problems.  There's no doubt about it.  The biggest problem with the film is consistency.  The movie's tagline "This Is Our Time" couldn't be more wrong.  It's not clear whether it's 1984 or 2011.  Does Brewer really think that high school students who drive around listening to Wiz Khalifa's "Black and Yellow" would actually dance to the theme from the 1984 original?  If so, I would like to meet these teens.  The same kids who sport iPods and smartphones can't possibly be singing and dancing to the some of the same tunes as Kevin Bacon and Lori Singer.  Footloose is a famed musical, but more importantly, it's a period piece that symbolizes the 80s.  Brewer should have never tried to modernize the film.  It would have worked much better had he just taken the setting of the film as is.

The other big issue for Brewer's remake is the acting talent. Kenny Wormald and Julianne Hough really should stick to dancing-only roles.  They're clearly not experienced actors, and this hurts the film tremendously.  They deliver the goods on the dance floor but can't get the job done when they actually open their mouths.

As many problems as there are with the movie, Footloose is a film that I want to like.  Even if it doesn't make sense that kids who listen to "Black and Yellow" dance vigorously to the "Footloose" theme, this remake is still a film with plenty of heart and plenty of laughs.  It has a youthful energy that you just can't deny.  Because it fails to live up to the classic, Footloose does just okay on the Sobriety Test.  This decent musical gets a 0.06% rating.  Have some frascati with this one.