Center Stage


Mixed or average reviews - based on 33 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 33
  2. Negative: 4 out of 33

Where To Watch

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Critic Reviews

  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. Audiences will leave the theater ready to sign up for some dance classes themselves.
  3. Reviewed by: Ted Gideonse
    The end is predictable after the first five minutes (two, if you're smart), but the film sucks you in all the same.
  4. 80
    Grand, juicy fun regardless, tapping as it does into some archetypal pleasure center.
  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. Rarely has a dance movie done so many cinematic pirouettes with such a graceful sense of audience-pleasing fun.
  7. New York Post
    Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    The best dance movie since "Flashdance."
  8. Chicago Tribune
    Reviewed by: Monica Eng
    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.
  9. Sexy and infectious in spite of itself.
  10. Reviewed by: Robert Horton
    There isn't a sensible reason to recommend this movie, except that its melange of clichés and conventions is embarrassingly enjoyable.
  11. 70
    A dopey but sweet-natured I-love-to-dance film, fits nicely into the downhill-since-"The-Red-Shoes" tradition of ballet movies.
  12. Aiming to keep it real, the cast of the new dance casserole Center Stage sweats spunk.
  13. Boston Globe
    Reviewed by: Jay Carr
    Anybody who's ever laced on toe shoes, or wanted to, will find something to take away from Center Stage.
  14. Philadelphia Inquirer
    Reviewed by: Desmond Ryan
    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.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 64 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 32 out of 33
  2. Negative: 0 out of 33
  1. AnnaS.
    Apr 9, 2007
    The acting is terrible, the choreography only shines in short slips of Ballanchine or MacMillan, and the cinematography during the dance The acting is terrible, the choreography only shines in short slips of Ballanchine or MacMillan, and the cinematography during the dance sequences frequently cuts annoyingly away to reaction shots of the (wooden) actors watching in the wings or the lobby. Nonetheless, the film is well worth watching for one reason, and his name is Ethan Stiefel. Widely regarded as one of the world's foremost technical artists when the film was shot, his dancing is outstanding. He steals every scene in which he appears. Fellow American Ballet Theatre alum Sasha Radetsky, playing a romantic rival, also acquits himself well onstage. Curiously, the female lead dancer is far less technically skilled than the two leading men, which lends the film an odd dynamic. In a picture where so much character exposition relies on dance, it's strange to have two men so blatently steal a number that's supposed to be about female empowerment. The too-brief appearances by Julie Kent (an ABT principal) are the only time that a fellow dancer can keep up with Stiefel, but those scenes are well worth watching. One wishes that Kent had played the female star of the film instead of the utterly unremarkable Amanda Schull, just so that we might see more of the snarky, graceful sense of humor that she brings to her small role. Full Review »
  2. EmilyB.
    Aug 20, 2001
    Fabulous from start to finish!
  3. MollyC.
    Jun 11, 2001
    This is my favorite movie. I've watched it 7 times already this week!