The Dancer Upstairs John Malkovich has set himself apart, again, in a discriminating directorial debut. Placed in an unnamed Latin American country, the thriller follows a frustrated lawyer…
Movie on DVD Review

The Dancer Upstairs (2003)

Details Release Date: Sep 23, 2003; DVD Release Date: Sep 23, 2003; Movie Rated: R; Genre: Drama; With: Javier Bardem, John Malkovich and Laura Morante; Distributor: Fox Searchlight Pictures

John Malkovich has set himself apart, again, in a discriminating directorial debut. Placed in an unnamed Latin American country, the thriller follows a frustrated lawyer -- turned -- virtuous police captain (the smoldering Bardem) who must disarm a rebel faction before it tears his country apart. Simultaneously, the crime fighter tries to combat his attraction to his daughter's elusive ballet teacher (Morante). It's the intricate plot -- which quietly examines a torn man's rectitude -- and Bardem's vibrant performance that leave an indelible mark. EXTRAS Skip the long-winded commentary from Bardem and Malkovich: The film's mysteries are explored in an engaging featurette with Malkovich, Bardem, and screenwriter Nicholas Shakespeare.

Originally posted Sep 26, 2003 Published in issue #730 Sep 26, 2003 Order article reprints