I wasn’t expecting much from Save the Last Dance, so it was my surprise what a good movie this was. The movie starts out pretty standard-fare. And as the opening scenes set-up the story, the ending was already predictable. But, that’s not important since the movie itself is charming enough and smart enough that it’s the experience of the movie that makes it so enjoyable.
Save the Last Dance follows Sara (Julia Stiles), who was a ballerina, but now has lost all interest in dancing. The opening sequence shows why. Her mom’s past away so now she has to move out of the nice suburbs and into the inner city with her father. This is an all-new experience for Sara, but unlike other Hollywood movies, there are no stereotypes or clichés about the inner-city school. The black folks at the school don’t react like they haven’t ever seen a white person before. Life goes on. Sara quickly befriends Chenille (Kerry Washington) and slowly falls in love with her brother Derek (Sean Patrick Thomas).
Why did I like the movie so much? It’s just fun to watch. The characters all feel real. What they say and do doesn’t ever feel contrived. And the characters are so likeable that I actually was yelling at the TV when one had to make a decision. Yes, that’s how much I cared about the characters. Go see this movie. You’ll love it. Yea, the ending’s predictable, but who cares? The movie is fun.