Body Rock (1984) A third-rate breakdancing cash-in with a protagonist taking a stand against kissing another man.

Theme Song: Executive produced by A&R Records founder Phil Ramone, the soundtrack for Body Rock sounds exactly like you would expect for an album that was probably pitched as follows: “Hey, this breakdancing is hot. We need an album of songs for a breakdancing movie.”

“Body Rock” by Maria Vidal. This song is called “Body Rock” and is about wanting to rock your body or possibly having your body rocked. It’s as if they were randomly combining words they heard kids saying and tried to make a song out of them.

“Let Your Body Rock (Don’t Stop)” by Ralph MacDonald. I just wanted to check back in with you. Were you able to rock your body or have it rocked in some way? Here is another song about rocking your body and not stopping.

Interesting Dated References: Early 80s B-Boy street culture as perceived by stuffy business executives whose bratty children wouldn’t stop talking about Beat Street and Breakin’.

Best Line: As part of a romantic R&B song — “I’m going to stuff you like an animal and beat you like a cannibal and make your body pay.”

Social Context: When a studio has a successful genre movie that captures an emerging subculture there’s always a wave of lesser movies that follow. Body Rock is a direct and hurried descendant of Breakin’ and Beat Street, themselves descendants of Fame and Wild Style.

Summary: Ethnically-ambiguous yet safely-handsome b-boy Chilly D (Lorenzo Lamas, Citizen Kane, Casablanca, The Godfather) runs a breakdancing crew that’s looking to breakthrough. The crew, named Body Rock, is seeking mainstream success and, confusingly, financial backing. They have enough money to own some type of food and supply-filled warehouse/clubhouse/concert venue, inside of which they throw nightly parties.

So Chilly goes to talk to big-shot entertainment agent Terrence (character actor Ray Sharkey).
Terrence invites him to start working at a mainstream dance club that looks like a totally unsafe 80s-metal jungle gym on the inside. The issue? Terrence only wants Chilly, not the rest of the Body Rock crew.

Then there are 15 music montages all in a row, in which Chilly learns to become a good dancer, abandons his old neighborhood, and becomes the heart-throbbing superstar entertainment act at this mainstream popular club.

From here, Body Rock starts to fall apart as it can’t find the crux for a viable storyline. Rival dance gang stealing the spotlight? Death of key member at the hands of organized crime? Real estate developers looking to tear down the club? City ordinances shutting down their warehouse? Pesky parents breaking up a budding romance? Nope, none of these. Chilly’s entire ascent to stardom is unraveled when a guy tries to make out with him.

It seems Donald, the owner of the mainstream club and the money behind Terrence’s record label, has his eye on Chilly D, and when he rebuffs, Donald strips him of all access to the club, the designer apartment, and even the “Body Rock” name.

Dejected and upset, Chilly wanders the streets while a song about wandering the streets plays. During the final “rapstravaganza” featuring the new Body Rock crew, Chilly storms the stage and demands people instead see his original Body Rock lineup, all of whom are conveniently present. Donald shuts off the power and the crowd starts chanting, “Give us back that music and break, break,” until Donald turns the power back on.

Seriously, that’s all they could come up with: Upset about gay advances, gets fired, rallies youth against man who tried to kiss him, leaves with pretty girl.

Worth Mentioning:
– One of the main members of the Body Rock breakdancing crew is Adolph “Oz Rock” Alvarez, whom I’ll remember as one of the main breakdancers from Mr. T’s Be Somebody… or Be Somebody’s Fool!, even though 95% of the times I watched it during the turn of the century I was mind-blowingly intoxicated on diarrhea-inducing malt liquors and disgusting 2 AM burritos. Others may remember him from The Pilot, a made-for-television breakdancing movie you should watch immediately because it’s only 23 minutes long. Also, according to EgoTrip, he is now deceased.

– Wow, did you guys know what a hard-ass Ray Sharkey was? His Wikipedia page is something else.

– Director Marcelo Epstein directed the video for The Crüe’s “Looks that Kill”.

Poster and Box Art: There was just this one piece of art created for Body Rock, which is featured on the Thorn EMI clamshell and all the foreign posters. Nobody put any other effort into the artistic presentation of this film.

Availability: Used VHS. I think there was a DVD at some point. Do your own homework.

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