Duke Ellington said it best: it don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that swing. Swing dancing was all the rage in the 1940s, but who knew it would also be a craze nowadays? Born out of the Great Depression, swing dancing elevates the human spirit beyond one’s circumstances as dancers can move to the beat for the sheer joy of it and disappear into something bigger, something dazzling, a space without criticism, judgment or inhibition.
"Glatzer captures the love and support of an intergenerational community, one in which nonagenarians cut the rug alongside up-and-comers. She’s there for some of the late-in-life international appearances of in-demand instructor Frankie Manning, a leading choreographer at Harlem’s Savoy Ballroom in the ’30s and a postal worker when swing revivalists embraced him half a century later.
There may be no fancy filmmaking steps in "Alive and Kicking," but the jaw-dropping improvisations and physical intimacy of the dancers make it an action film par excellence — joy-fueled and gravity-defying." Sherri Linden, LA Times