ByKristina Mercado, writer at
Horror film fan, self-proclaimed nerd, entertainer of the masses
Kristina Mercado

It has been 32 years since Joel Goodsen danced in his tighty whities (Risky Business), 19 years since Romy and Michelle slid across the dance floor together (Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion), and 30 years since Duckie tried to pelvic thrust and fist pump his way into Andie's heart (Pretty in Pink). Something about dance scenes makes movies stick in our memories and make us embarrassingly try to recreate them (thank goodness my Glee dance attempts have never been caught on film). Hollywood has always been great at dancing and has done nothing but continue to step up their game. With that in mind, let's take a look at 5 of the most memorable dances in film.

5. The Time Warp - 'The Rocky Horror Picture Show'

Let me start by saying that I am extremely biased with this one. I performed in the shadow cast for nearly 10 years and knew every step and word by heart. What makes 'The Time Warp' so amazing is so much more than its catchy tune or step-by-step instructions; it is the celebration that is 'The Time Warp.' For so many, RHPS is the epitome of acceptance of all of each other’s oddities and this dance brings together every amazing emotion in that regard. Plus, you can only do the YMCA at a wedding so many times!

4. You Should Be Dancing - 'Saturday Night Fever'

Whether you have seen this movie or not, John Travolta and 'You Should Be Dancing' by The Bee Gees are synonymous. The way Travolta moves across the dance floor gives a lighter feel to this serious movie, even if it's only for a little while. This scene is what people associate with disco and that makes it part of movie history.

3. Hey Pachuco - 'The Mask'

I know this isn't what most people expect when they think of dance scenes, but this has to make my list because of how wacky and fun it is. It has everything a great dance scene needs: drama, humor, and sexual tension. Watching Jim Carrey and Cameron Diaz made everyone want to learn how to swing dance just to re-create this scene. Even Dancing with the Stars copied it, becoming one of the show's top 10 dances!

2. America - 'West Side Story'

This tragic re-telling of Romeo & Juliet is one of the best movies of all time. The fact that so many amazing dance numbers are included is the icing on the cake. However, when the cast sings 'America' on the rooftop before the tragic fight scene, cinematic history was made. Everything about this dance is practically perfect in every way. The cast members' skill, along with their ability to have such a happy and carefree moment in such a dark story, is amazing. It is like our final happy moment before utter heartbreak.

Honorable Mention - Final Dance Scene in 'Magic Mike XXL'

I had to include Channing Tatum and Twitch's dance scene at the end of Magic Mike XXL because of the awesome and sexy moves; more importantly, because I get to see Channing Tatum dance half-naked and in such a way that I get butterflies. Ladies and gents: You're welcome.

Honorable Mention - 'Coming to America'

This is such a great movie and this dance scene is one the most memorable things about it. It had high-energy choreography, great synchronization, and dancing that was ahead of its time. The icing on the cake: the most famous Laker Girl, Paula Abdul, put this whole thing together by herself. She may be a little kooky, but she has definitely got talent.

1. I've Had the Time of My Life - 'Dirty Dancing'

Nobody puts baby in the corner! Cliché as it is, this has to be my number one pick for most memorable dance scene ever! This was my original teenage angst story, and it didn't include the Brat Pack... always a plus. This number has melted hearts of girls since it came out 29 years ago. Patrick Swayze was just the perfect blend of rebel and pretty boy. Jennifer Grey was just breathtaking, sexy, and still left us a touch of Baby's innocence. This is the dance that my high school dances never lived up to.

There you have my top dances scenes of all time! Hollywood is setting the bar higher every day. With so many great dance scenes out there, it is impossible to keep up!

Which dance scenes are your favorite? Let us know in the comments!


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