“Rebels on Pointe” Is Exactly That
One of the deep-seated ironies of the ballet is that a respectfully helping of the men who dance are gay, yet the bulk of ballets are, not to sound too stiff and academic, not gender-confirming: You know, the prince seeking his princesses kind of stuff.
But for the past four decades, the Les Ballets Trockaderos de Monte Carlo are an all-male, drag dance company headquarter in lower Manhattan’s meat-packing district. The “Trocks” are well-known in dance circles, and perform international, both exalting and spoofing traditional ballet along the way.
Although the promotional materials for the documentary “Rebels of Pointe” link the company’s founding to the reverberations of the Stonewall Riots, director Bobbi Jo Hart only subtly plays the obvious political and social commentary throughout the film, casually interweaving these observations about conformity, convention and contemporary dance into the portrait. Ultimately, like the dancers and the “Trocks,” the film is highly engaging and likable.
What is also evident is the remarkable cinematography and editing. There are beautiful shots, loads of quiet close-ups that create intimacy and an equal helping of quick edits that giddyup the pacing. This is a master at work.