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:: Mad Hot Ballroom

Mad Hot Ballroom is a fun and engaging documentary that follows kids from three New York City public schools as they take a mandatory semester of ballroom dancing classes. As the kids begin training for an upcoming competition, they learn discipline, musicality and self-confidence - not to mention the meringue, the tango and the rumba.

Although the kids are less than impressed when confronted with the prospect of dancing with members of the opposite sex (“ew, girl germs!”), these fifth graders do their best to learn the style and technique of ballroom dancing. At the risk of sounding cheesy, it is inspiring to see these kids from Brooklyn, Tribeca and Washington Heights making the most of the lessons. The teachers also seem to genuinely care about their students' wellbeing - especially the teary young one!

The upbeat music and dancing will have you vowing to sign up to your nearest dance class however the most compelling aspect of the film is the interviews with the kids themselves. Discovering their opinions on their future, life, love and other catastrophes is great viewing. My only criticism of the film is that its focus is too broad. The film features so many kids that it is hard for the viewer to keep track of them all.

If you liked Spellbound and Strictly Ballroom you will love this!