Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

Flashdance (1983)


Written by Tim Dirks

Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

Flashdance (1983)

In Adrian Lyne's R-rated sleeper hit - a musical romantic drama with energetic, glossy music-video style dance sequences - a major box-office success and cultural touchstone, and generally regarded as a formulaic, implausible Cinderella story:

  • in the early iconic opening scene, Pittsburgh steel-mill welder/ exotic bar dancer Alexandra "Alex" Owens (Jennifer Beals) at Mawbry's Bar was supine on a chair as water splashed down on her (mostly in dark silhouette); she was accompanied by the song "He's a Dream" sung by Shandi Sinnamon (as Shandi); then, "Alex" rose from the chair and danced in her wet red leotard
  • in another sweaty gym scene, Alex engaged in a vigorous workout (with two others who were providing dating advice) with equipment and weights - to the tune of "I Love Rock 'N Roll", sung by Joan Jett & The Blackhearts
  • in the film's 90-second, influential, trend-setting street scene, Alex (in a long-shot) coming upon a group of B-boys (Wayne "Frosty Freeze" Frost, Richard "Crazy Legs" Colon, and the Rock Steady Crew), who showed off their break-dancing moves to the tune of Jimmy Castor’s "It’s Just Begun"
  • living in the loft of a huge abandoned and converted warehouse, she also aspired to become a professional ballet dancer
  • the film's major iconic image was of Alex's torn/cut-off-the-shoulder gray sweatshirt (she deftly removed her black bra under the sweatshirt)
  • in another physically-demanding sequence, Alex performed an intense foot-pounding, stretching, hair-spinning, practice exercise routine in a black leotard, to the tune of Michael Sembello's hit song "(She's A) Maniac" ("And she's dancing like she's never danced before"); it began with black leotarded Alex taping up her feet in preparation for an intense workout of running in place, twirling, and stretching (usually performed by body double Marine Jahan); there were lots of closeups, fast cuts and blurred action typical of the MTV style
"(She's A) Maniac" Dance Sequence
  • Alex initially entered reluctantly into a romance with her persistent, handsome, older, wealthy steel-mill boss Nick Hurley (Michael Nouri); during a seductive scene between them, she tantalized him during a lobster dinner - while she was dressed in a black tux; she slowly nibbled and sucked soft pieces of seafood, and suggestively asked: "What turns you on? (during the conversation, she moved her leg up under the table to tantalizingly touch his crotch with her stockinged toes) You like phone booths?"; when Nick's ex-wife Kate (Belinda Bauer) showed up to introduce herself, and made insinuating comments about Alex's work as a welder and stripper, Alex removed her tuxedo coat jacket (leaving the front piece of only a white shirt and cuffs without sleeves), and candidly described her provocative first date with Nick: "I f--ked his brains out"
Sexy Lobster Dinner with Nick
  • the climactic scene of Alex' audition (with a black leotard and ankle warmers) before the Pittsburgh Conservatory of Dance and Repertory to the tune of the Oscar-winning Best Song "Oh, What a Feeling!" (sung by Irene Cara); at first she stumbled and faltered, and asked to start over ("Can I start again?") - the film's final line of dialogue, and was allowed to continue - with a combination of moves (including break-dancing at the end), she was able to gain entrance to the Conservatory
  • the loving and cliched, upbeat romantic conclusion, including a clinch - after her important dance audition, Alex met Nick; she received a handful of long-stemmed red roses, a twirl and a loving kiss in the freeze-framed, dialogue-less conclusion - to the tune of "Flashdance - What a Feeling!"

Sweaty Gym Workout


Cut-Off Sweatshirt

"Can I start again?"

Winning Audition at Pittsburgh Conservatory

Congratulatory Kiss and Clinch


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