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Dancing Across Borders (2008)

tomatometer

45

Average Rating: 5.4/10
Critic Reviews: 11
Fresh: 5 | Rotten: 6

No consensus yet.

audience

67

liked it
Average Rating: 3.5/5
User Ratings: 146

My Rating

Movie Info

On a trip to Angkor Wat in Siem Reap, Cambodia in January 2000, filmmaker Anne Bass came across a sixteen-year-old boy who moved her immensely with his amazing natural charm and grace as a dancer. A longtime devotee of the world of dance, Bass felt compelled to give this young boy the opportunity to leave his home and follow a dream that he could not yet have fully imagined. From the serene countryside of Southeast Asia to the halls of New York's School of American Ballet to the stage of the

Oct 26, 2010

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All Critics (22) | Top Critics (11) | Fresh (13) | Rotten (9) | DVD (1)

Less than an hour and a half long, it seems to take forever to end.

June 3, 2010 Full Review Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The rehearsal footage of Sy is repetitive, but the peculiar dynamic between sponsor and protégé is fascinating.

May 20, 2010 Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Do-gooder vanity projects don't come more self-aggrandizing than this.

April 30, 2010 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
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There are times when the subject of a documentary transcends merely adequate filmmaking, and that is very much the case with Dancing Across Borders...

April 30, 2010 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Sometimes with documentaries, the best intentions have a way of making decent people look bad. Dancing Across Borders is a dismaying case in point.

April 22, 2010 Full Review Source: Boston Globe
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic

In carefully edited clips from his Cambodian years (brief mention is made of Pol Pot's devastating influence), as well as later performances in the United States, Bass demonstrates his stunning leaps and graceful partnering.

April 8, 2010 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This is a film that ought to be watched by all youngsters hoping for a career in dance.

December 31, 2010 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

Have you ever listened to someone delightedly telling you a story and not realizing how badly he comes off in his own tale? That's the queasy sensation I got from the documentary Dancing Across Borders.

May 21, 2010 Full Review Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press
St. Paul Pioneer Press

Dance fanatics will appreciate the story, as will fans of cross-culturalism in the arts. Let's leave all mention of exploitation of the exotic for another time and place.

May 4, 2010 Full Review Source: East Bay Express
East Bay Express

You may want to strangle Bass with her couture capris, but Borders eventually becomes the inspirational film you suspect it meant to be all along.

April 30, 2010 Full Review Source: Washington City Paper
Washington City Paper

The film is a wonderful mix of ballet rehearsals and performances, the saga of a young artist's struggle and success, and a personal story of dealing with cross-cultural conflict and resolution.

April 25, 2010 Full Review Source: Entertainment Insiders
Entertainment Insiders

Twyla Tharp calls him "remarkable," and watching him do Harlequin in Balanchine's La Sonnambula, you can see why: he might not be a born ballet dancer, but he's a born performer.

April 21, 2010 Full Review Source: Boston Phoenix
Boston Phoenix

It's a rare film that gives viewers the opportunity to watch an artist-in-training pretty much from square one, and "Dancing Across Borders" does just that.

April 16, 2010 Full Review Source: Movie Dearest
Movie Dearest

Lacks probing interviews to highlight the tremendous cultural change, but Sy remains an engaging focus point and there are numerous performance sequences that ably demonstrate his growing accomplishments.

March 26, 2010 Full Review Source: Boxoffice Magazine
Boxoffice Magazine

As subjects for documentaries go, a dancer who hasn't really done a whole lot with his life so far isn't, on paper, the most arresting story you can tell

March 25, 2010 Full Review Source: Filmcritic.com
Filmcritic.com

The film spends an inordinate amount of time with people talking about what a good dancer Sy is, as opposed to showing him actually dancing.

March 25, 2010 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

An astonishing documentary about a young male ballet performer from Cambodia who has startled and amazed the dance world with his bold leaps and incredible grace.

March 24, 2010 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

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