That show on ABC Family, Bunheads, is about Ballet and is doing well, so why not make a Ballet movie? That is where today’s film comes from.
The movie begins with a group of women rushing to Grand Central station. We don’t know what the hurry is, but we see as one of them checks her watch that it’s 4:55pm. When they finally arrive at the station, they spread out, and begin to gracefully pickpocket commuters leaving work and heading to their trains. They have extremely elegant movements. Some would even think they were Ballet dancers their leaps, pliès and motions are so graceful. Anyway, they get back to their loft-like hideout, and their leader Stitch, played by Michelle Rodriguez, says they need to do better. They only got $1,000 which will only last the 5 of them for another month. They need to start getting better. We see one of the girls, Mira, played by Chloe Moretz doesn’t look happy. She says, isn’t there another way we could make money? Stitch has a long monologue about how she found Mira when she was abandoned years ago by her foster parents and raised her as her own. This is the only life she knows, and the only life she’ll ever know. The other nondescript, but racial diverse girls tell Mira to just relax, and they all get the stretching and taking off their dancer shoes or whatever.
The next scene we the gang of dancing thieves attempt the same pickpocket scheme from the day prior only this time it appears the cops are ready for them and right as they dance their way and pick pocket everyone and try to get on the same train they always escape to, the cops are on that train waiting to arrest them all. Because their movements were all so perfect and organized, it was easy to see their pattern on video. It was almost like a baller how they robbed people. Next we see Stitch is arrested and sentence to prison long enough to come back later on in the movie and it be a big deal, and all of the young girls are given the choice: go to a juvenile detention center, or enroll in the School of American Ballet and make something of themselves. Jennifer Garner plays Mavis Wheatley, the head of the school thought that it might be a way to turn this negative incident into a positive one. All of the girls outside of Mira decide to go juvenile detention.
Soon after we see Mira packing the one bag that she has and walking up to the doors of the Ballet school. She sees tons of waiflike girls heading into the school and based on Mira’s dishevelled look, you can see she doesn’t belong. Once she gets in and gets her class schedule, she heads into the studio and is greeted by Mavis saying, “you’re late.” Mira is sorry and the rest of the girls giggle at her for whatever reason, and because it’s a movie and I know jack shit about the progression of Ballet classes, Mavis asks who can perform the best Grand Pliè and the characteristically bitchy girl Ashley, played by Miranda Cosgrove does one and all of the girls clap. Mira sees this and says she thinks she can do one too. Mavis says something about how it’s her first day, maybe she shouldn’t, but Mira tries anyway. She falls the first time and the girls laugh, but then tries again and it’s perfect. Mavis congratulates her and says that her Pliè looks familiar, but is one of the best she’s ever seen.
Anyway a bunch of time passes and Mira begins to make friends with some of Ashley’s friends, but Ashley still hates her and makes fun of her for being poor. During Parents Weekend, Ashley notices that Mira doesn’t have any family visit and decides to take this opportunity to let everyone know that Mira is only there because she’s a criminal. All of Mira’s new friends leave her and she goes to her room (it’s a boarding school) to cry. Mavis knocks on the door and asks her if everything is ok. Mavis says some stuff about how Ballet can save her if she lets it. And goes on to tell a story about the baby she gave up for adoption when she landed the lead in Swan Lake or something, and how that baby went on to a great family. Mira asks how that little girl is doing now and Mavis says she hasn’t spoken to them in years because she’s not supposed to, but the Wilson’s were great. Mira mentions her adopted parents were named the Wilson’s and they were great til they died in a car accident, and then she was put in foster care. Through a bunch of exposition I don’t care to explain, They realize they are mother and daughter. This makes Mavis happy, but makes Mira angry. “How could you just give me up?” They have a tearfully emotive scene and Mira decides she’s leaving once the semester is over.
We see at this point Mira is doing well, but wants nothing to do with Mavis at all. Eventually Stitch and the girls get out of prison and juvie and decide to check in on Mira and see how she’s doing. They tell her she’s always welcome back, cause they are family. Mira agrees to leave. Obviously because it’s convenient, the same day that Stitch choreographs a new untraceable dance robbery, it’s also Mira’s final Ballet performance at Lincoln Center. If she doesn’t perform, she’ll forfeit her parole and go to juvenile hall. Mavis asks Ashley where Mira is and she says that she quit, she said she couldn’t hack it, and Ashley assumes the lead role in the Ballet (Mira is the best and alot of montages showed you that). Mavis leaves right before the performance to find her. Mira you can tell has misgivings about the robbery, but she goes anyway, and we see that the cops this time are ready and prepared to send the dance robbers to jail for hard time this time around. They were waiting for them to turn back up at Grand Central. Right before they go into Grand Central, Mavis yells to Mira, to wait. Stitch tells Mira, to come on. That lady doesn’t care about you, and stuff like that. Mavis says that she gave her up once and it was the biggest regret of her life, she’d throw away everything to have Mira. Mira realizes that the show is about to go on in 15 mins and says that they need to go if they’re gonna make it in time. Mavis smiles and they get in a cab. Before that Stitch tells Mira, she’s not welcome anymore and never to come back. Right as they try and pull off their new dance heist, they get caught and arrested.
We see Mira makes it back in time and crushes the ballet and Mavis is super proud. Mira says, “I guess I know where I get my moves from” and they hug. As time passes we see that Mira and Mavis become the best of friends and Mavis gains custody of her and they live happily ever after. In prison, we see a jacked up Stitch watching Ballet on tv and it’s Mira. She’s the lead in some Ballet show on tv, and Stitch smiles.
Theres no men in this movie outside of cops.
I think we now have to try to change our judicial system so that all criminals can choose either prison or Ballet. Also, I love all the character names, particularly Ashley as the characteristically bitchy girl.
Hey…. wait a minute…
I love the idea of a bunch of women ballet robbers. I thought this was just going to be some flash mob bullshit, but instead it owned hard. Also, I second Dunn’s conclusion about the character names.
i would love to see the opening scene filmed.
i hate you for casting M-Rod though