Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights (2004)
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Critic Reviews for Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights
Pure schmaltz, but not without its share of feel-good entertainment value.
Next to Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights, the first picture is like something out of the golden age of Hollywood.
Tries to add Cuban flavor to a familiar plot but comes up with nothing more than a bubbling stew of cliches.
Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights does have some sexy music and a few good dance sequences in a steamy nightclub, but the story is terribly contrived and the lead actors have zero chemistry.
A routine Hollywood high school morality play.
Audience Reviews for Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights
Without any of the spark of the original this second Dirty Dancing film is a giant disappointment to every expectant woman looking forward to the same sex appeal of Swayze we were graced with in the original. Set in revolutionary Cuba, much of the film decided to saturate itself with this plot point, including spicy music, random acts of rebellion, and societal and family tensions within the lower classes of workers who cater to the American residents. As you can guess, this leads to a Romeo and Juliet-esque relationship between prim and proper Katey and working Joe, Javier. The reason the original worked so well was the immersion of the time period with a nostalgic soundtrack, and a love story of abandoning innocence for something much better, freedom finally being found through dance. This film seems to want to explore an entire country's journey towards freedom instead. Garai's character is less developed than the original Baby, and her relationship with her forbidden lover is random. If they hadn't set it where they had, in the time they had, and maybe hadn't even included a love story, it could have successfully worked. Even in the original there wasn't a lot of great choreography, but there were some profound scenes involving Patrick Swayze, who pops up to provide somewhat of a cameo as the dance teacher who teaches Katey about letting her partner get close to her. In this there is no exciting dance scenes, except for a brief peek into a Cuban club, and that's fast glanced over. Besides the fact that this is pure consumer cheese, the music does not set the mood, as it's all from the past ten years. I would have been more understanding if they hadn't tried to sell it as a Dirty Dancing film.
Different story...centred on the dancing aspect. Not bad at all.
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