Shall We Dance


Shall We Dance

Critics Consensus

The cast is warmly appealing, but with the loss of cultural context and addition of big-name celebrities, this American version loses the nuances of the original.



Total Count: 157


Audience Score

User Ratings: 205,501
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Shall We Dance Photos

Movie Info

Directed by Peter Chelsom, this film is the English-language remake of Masayuki Suo's 1995 romantic comedy of the same name; the Japanese version earned a record-breaking 9.5 million dollars in United States box offices. Shall We Dance? revolves around John Clark (Richard Gere), a workaholic Chicago lawyer who, despite a respectable paycheck and loving family, is unable to shake the feeling that something in his life is missing. On a whim, John disrupts his normal evening commute to attend a dance class in hopes of meeting Paulina (Jennifer Lopez), a beautiful dance teacher he would occasionally spot gazing out of the studio windows. Though Paulina quickly lays to rest any preconceived romantic notions John may have had about her, she nonetheless forms a bond with him that goes beyond those normally held by a teacher and student. Invigorated with his new hobby, John focuses his newfound enthusiasm into training for an upcoming dance competition; however, he chooses not to let his wife (Susan Sarandon) in on his plans. Unaware that dance may be, in fact, saving her marriage, John's wife becomes suspicious of all the time he spends away from home and hires a private investigator to find out whether or not her husband is having an affair. Ultimately, John is forced to examine how his old dreams fit in to his new life. ~ Tracie Cooper, Rovi

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Richard Gere
as John Clark
Susan Sarandon
as Beverly Clark
Stanley Tucci
as Link Peterson
Anita Gillette
as Miss Mitzi
Nick Cannon
as Scottie
Tamara Hope
as Jenna Clark
Stark Sands
as Evan Clark
Ja Rule
as Hip-Hop Bar Performer
Sharon Bajer
as Woman at Party
Stan Lesk
as Flower Man
Sean O'Brian
as Parking Attendant
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Critic Reviews for Shall We Dance

All Critics (157) | Top Critics (42) | Fresh (73) | Rotten (84)

  • Offers attractive, inoffensive characters and a smattering of broad laughs, but it fails to use its potential to explore weightier themes such as John's mid-life crisis.

    Jun 24, 2006 | Full Review…

    Amy Simmons

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • Shall We Dance? stumbles into a tight corner between comedy and romance, failing to satisfy on either count.

    Feb 15, 2005 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • Under the clunky direction of Peter Chelsom, while forced to mouth inane dialogue by Audrey Wells ... a swell bunch of troupers get mangled in a monsoon of clichés.

    Oct 21, 2004 | Full Review…

    Rex Reed

    Top Critic
  • There are so many appealing performers in Shall We Dance? that it's a crime the director, Peter Chelsom, and the screenwriter, Audrey Wells, haven't given them more to do.

    Oct 19, 2004 | Full Review…
  • Occasionally charming but ultimately forgettable bit of fox-trot fluff.

    Oct 15, 2004 | Full Review…
  • Takes a small, exquisite Japanese movie and turns it into a big, stupid American movie. Still, it must be said that as glossy and overproduced as the thing is, it's a good Big Stupid American movie.

    Oct 15, 2004 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Shall We Dance

  • Jun 23, 2011
    Richard Gere ruined this film. That is all.
    Bethany M Super Reviewer
  • Dec 02, 2010
    beautiful, beautiful movie
    Andreia C Super Reviewer
  • Mar 13, 2010
    Richard Gere gives an outstanding performance of a guy who is bored with his daily train commute to and from work and his stable, secure and contented home life, simply lacks the excitement needed to have more happiness in his life. He seeks diversion by taking ballroom dancing lessons. Jennifer Lopez is good in a minor role helping Gere get his rhythm and Susan Sarandon does just as good, portraying the role of Gere's wife who is unaware of her husband's dancing. All the dance scenes are great, especially one in the middle between Gere and Lopez. "Shall We Dance" is sweet, funny and the dance scenes were incredible.
    Deb S Super Reviewer
  • Sep 28, 2009
    For the last 5,000 years humanity has been dancing it has become part of our culture, it has become part of who we are even if we can't dance we still do it not because we want to but because we have to. When we hear music that just gets our blood racing and our feet tapping we just can't resist getting up off our feet and just dancing. It's natural and it feels good and that is the center of Peter Chelsom?s charming romantic/musical comedy that is more about love of the human spirit and music than love itself. "Shall we Dance?" is not as flashy as Rob Marshall's "Chicago" or as slick as "Grease" but what it has going for it is that it doesn't try and cheat you out of the reality of things that actually happen in real life it doesn't use big musical numbers or anything you see in conventional musicals. Instead it takes it slow and builds up the relationships between the characters and also takes it time building up to its heart warming and musical dazzled finale. But what really makes "Shall we dance? a real joy is not the music nor is it the back drop of New York as a huge ballroom, no what makes "Shall we dance " such a joy and a pleasure to watch is the fact that the actors have so much fun at just doing what there doing. They enjoy the dancing and they enjoy working with each other and it shows as the films progresses on but while they music and the actors are phenomenal what really draws you into this films world is the amazing cinematography that highlights and creates a more elegant and graceful New York it makes it dream like and creates an atmosphere that is relaxing, while exhilarating, enthralling but subtle. "Shall we Dance?" is a move event that you don't want to miss it's so heart warming, so funny, sweet and oh so charming that even if you don't like it at first you will by the end , it's just too good to resist. Richard Gere gives one of his most charming and endearing performances as an overworked and bored lawyer just looking for his place in the world and he found it through dancing. Gere is charming as usual yes but his performance is less based on his charms than his skills but what makes him such a staple and a standout is the fact that Gere doesn't play younger than he is he actually for once plays his age and it is a relief to see that because Gere usually always is the romantic lead or the one who seduces younger woman but seeing him play a stable family man is somewhat of a relief but also seeing him let loose on the dance floor is also something to behold. Gere is both functional and stylish and is not only a class act but proves that even though he's old he?s not out of the game yet. Susan Sarandon is perfectly cast as the wife of Gere, Sarandon may be down played in this film but her character and the time she is on screen is very important to keep the story going and even she delivers a few laughs of her own. But Sarandon is great and with more screen time I think she would have made a lovely addition to the main cast but where she ended up is just as good. Jennifer Lopez is beautiful and graceful as the dance instructor Paullina but her acting talent's are seriously lacking and she can't hold her own besides Sarandon and Gere but her amazing moves and style is enough to give her the edge she needs to stay afloat beside two titans. The rest of the cast including Stanley Tucci and Lisa Ann Walter and other known faces are great and help hold up the main cast and even at times shine on there own and show there just as good as the big names. "Shall We Dance?" Is a musical for our times and a film that can be enjoyed by anyone with a passion for dancing or a love for people that do? While some may call it clique and some may call it derivative of other better musical. But I say what do you think?
    C.R. L Super Reviewer

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