The Unenthusiastic Critic needs a hero, and she doesn't find one in 1984's Footloose. 

On this week's episode, Michael and Nakea are talking about movie soundtracks, before sitting down for Nakea's first viewing of an inexplicable cultural phenomenon that sold 9 million albums, made Kevin Bacon a star, and taught a generation of white people how to dance badly.

Join us for a lively (if slightly snarky) conversation about Bible-Belt morality, farm-equipment safety, why white people can't clap on 2 and 4, and how not everything Generation X remembers fondly is necessarily good.


0:00: Prologue: from Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
0:59: Preliminary Conversation: Movie Soundtracks
21:16: TV Trailer for Footloose
21:42: Cultural Osmosis: Pre-Viewing Discussion of Footloose
31:43: Interlude: Scene from Footloose
32:24: The Verdict: Post-Viewing Discussion of Footloose
1:14:07: Outro and Next Week's Movie
1:16:01: Outtake

Notes and Links

—Film discussed: Footloose (dir. Herbert Ross, Paramount, 1984)
—Article on the Inspiration for Footloose: "You Got Trouble in Elmore City: That's Spelled with a 't,' Which Rhymes with 'd' and That Stands for Dancing," Kent Demarat, People, May 19, 1980
"Top Ten Best-Selling Soundtracks," Rob Brunner, Entertainment Weekly, March 13, 1998.
—Video Mentioned: "The 5/4 Trick," by Joshua Surufka (in which Harry Connick Jr. tricks his audience into clapping correctly on the 2 and 4 beats).
—Listen to additional episodes and read The Unenthusiastic Critic in prose form at
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—"Warm Duck Shuffle" by Arne Huseby is licensed under CC BY 3.0.

The Unaffiliated Critic

Michael G. McDunnah is a freelance writer, a recovering lit major, a pop-culture junkie, and an unaffiliated critic. He lives in Chicago.

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