Metascore
52

Mixed or average reviews - based on 33 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 33
  2. Negative: 4 out of 33
  1. Ultimately the ballet performances, and notably the work of Stiefel, a star with American Ballet Theatre, are the only moments that deserve center stage.
  2. 80
    Grand, juicy fun regardless, tapping as it does into some archetypal pleasure center.
  3. Audiences will leave the theater ready to sign up for some dance classes themselves.
  4. Reviewed by: Ted Gideonse
    80
    The end is predictable after the first five minutes (two, if you're smart), but the film sucks you in all the same.
  5. 75
    The movie uses the materials of melodrama, but is gentle with them; it's oriented more in the real world, and doesn't jack up every conflict and love story into an overwrought crisis.
  6. Reviewed by: Monica Eng
    75
    Although the film's ending is a little too neat and happy to be realistic, it does leave you with the feeling of young girls taking charge of their lives.
  7. Rarely has a dance movie done so many cinematic pirouettes with such a graceful sense of audience-pleasing fun.
  8. 75
    The best dance movie since "Flashdance."
  9. Reviewed by: Robert Horton
    70
    There isn't a sensible reason to recommend this movie, except that its melange of clichés and conventions is embarrassingly enjoyable.
  10. Reviewed by: Moira Macdonald
    70
    A dopey but sweet-natured I-love-to-dance film, fits nicely into the downhill-since-"The-Red-Shoes" tradition of ballet movies.
  11. Sexy and infectious in spite of itself.
  12. Modestly entertaining when it is engaged in such a celebration onstage, but it trips up when the action moves backstage, where bad dialogue ... lurks in the shadows.
  13. Aiming to keep it real, the cast of the new dance casserole Center Stage sweats spunk.
  14. Reviewed by: Jay Carr
    63
    Anybody who's ever laced on toe shoes, or wanted to, will find something to take away from Center Stage.
  15. 60
    The story is shallow stuff, but pretty entertaining until it becomes utterly preposterous.
  16. 50
    Comes off as an episode of "Beverly Hills, 90210" where, instead of spoiled rich kids, the characters are all ballet stars in the making.
  17. Don't like archetypes? Wait till you meet the cliches.
  18. The strained romantic plot is a slow fizzle.
  19. 50
    It's so predictable, you can set your watch to when the bulimic will sneak away to the bathroom.
  20. All that artistry is surrounded by a hackish, paint-by-numbers storyline that makes the time between dance numbers seem endless.
  21. As a Balanchine-like martinet, Peter Gallagher is a hoot, whispering to his minions about good and bad feet.
  22. 50
    Has next to no story beyond some stock clichés about bulimia, stage mothers and internal affairs in the corps de ballet.
  23. 50
    The cliched script by Carol Heikkinen plays like "Dawson's Creek" in toeshoes.
  24. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Zimmer
    50
    Pays lip service to the seriousness of craft but won't let us watch the dancing.
  25. Reviewed by: Jan Stuart
    50
    Only really kicks in when it is dancing, which is about half the time.
  26. Reviewed by: Emanuel Levy
    50
    Unfortunately, Center Stage is directed and shot (by Geoffrey Simpson) in a way that doesn't let the audience feel the exhilarating pull of the dance world.
  27. 40
    A big disappointment. It's toe-tappin' tripe aimed squarely at the undiscerning Britney Spears set.
  28. 40
    An ounce of self-awareness about its almost gleeful use of cliches would have improved this dance soap opera.
  29. Reviewed by: Joanne Spataro
    38
    Despite the fun dancing, sidestep Center Stage.
  30. All dancing and hugging and no good.
  31. Unlikely to receive many curtain calls.
  32. Reviewed by: Staff
    0
    While movie reviewers like to throw around the line, "This is the worst movie I've ever seen," this movie may be the worst movie I've ever seen.

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