Starring: Levan Gelbakhiani, Bachi Valishvili, Ana Javakishvili
Director: Levan Akin
Running Time: 113 mins
And Then We Danced (და ჩვენ ვიცეკვეთ) is a Georgian film about a young dancer who, while giving his all in his preparations for a potentially life-defining audition, begins to discover himself following the arrival of a new student at his academy.
A coming-of-age drama that aims to bring the passion of traditional dance into a story about finding yourself, And Then We Danced is certainly an intimate tale, albeit one that’s far from the arresting, powerful piece it wants to be.
Telling the story of a young man who discovers his true self while he strives for an important dance role, And Then We Danced is at its strongest when it focuses hard on the emotional intensity of its lead character’s inner turmoil and determination.
In that, the film’s two sides – dance and romance – are gripping as individual stories, and their most intense moments are hugely memorable. However, when brought together, things don’t gel quite as spectacularly, and the film finds itself caught up in a rather frustrating muddle.
Trying to blend the two sides of the story with similar themes of passion, there’s no shortage of emotion on display in this film. However, in trying to tie those two tales together, And Then We Danced loses the opportunity to focus harder on the more powerful, intense moments of each individual tale.
When the dancing and the romance are entirely separate, the film is more gripping and far more moving. It is still a little disjointed, but in comparison to those fairly unsuccessful attempts to bring the two sides of the story together, it makes for a much more engaging watch.
Overall, And Then We Danced, for all its passion and intimate emotion, is far from an outstanding film. At times, it delivers intense and powerful drama, but it too often fumbles its two gripping tales in a misguided attempt to blend them into one passionate coming-of-age story. And that’s why I’m giving the film a 7.1.