In the run up to Christmas it was only so long until street dance DVDs started hitting the shelves wanting their piece of the festive pie. Flawless: Live Street Dance – Access All Areas (formerly known as Chase the Dream) is Flawless’ shot at the crown of Christmas King.
My instinct says this is aimed at a T4 audience. One reason why: There’s too much lifting up of shirts to flash toned abs for the ladies sometimes, which may explain why product listings before the DVD went on sale listed it as a 12 certificate.
With its pacing and talking head interviews you could very well imagine this as a programme on Channel 4 on a Sunday morning.
After the opening credits I was worried at first the DVD would have dubbed over the original songs used in the show in place for tacky license-free tunes to cut on production costs (normally resulting in off-sync dancing), but all the music has been cleared. I think there are even songs produced by Mikey J used for freestyles, the UK’s go-to man for beats that match dance choreography.
While some of the routines had to be filmed during tech rehearsals to get close ups of the action someone should have kept an eye out for minor continuity mistakes (the stage projection is either on or off; dance routines either have a title or they don’t).
There are a good few numbers from the show, with Commute, Code Red, The Matrix , House, the popping and brilliant mirror routine choreograped by Nathan ‘Neo’ Gordon, also of Flo’Ography fame. For around the price of theatre ticket you actually get to see a fair bit of their show if you didn’t catch it during its tour, with the benefits of post-production effects such as slow motion replays.
Flawless: Code Red
Although there’s a lot of talking head moments from Flawless about their backgrounds and career, and of course the show, it doesn’t feel like I’ve gotten to know the crew as well as I would have liked.
Interestingly all of Flawless are credited on screen with their real names well as their performance names. That takes away a little of the magic. There are two Pauls and two Nathans in the group!
It’s actually the DVD extra, the Behind the Scenes Showreel that there’s a sense of the boys being themselves as they perform in Monte Carlo, play a charity football match, shook hands with a royal and mess around on the tour bus.
“I think it’s an amazing opportunity to be my best friends on a tour I love doing every day, ” said Shock as he reflected while popping out of the tour bus to get a snack from the petrol station, talking about how intense the Chase the Dream tour is. “At the end of the day it’s your life that you’re living so make it happen and push, and work hard for it as well.”
Someone explain why a deep, insighful quote like that wasn’t used in the main feature?
Character is left to the solo freestyles, where everyone is free to express themselves in their favourite style (although the choice of tracks they dance to become a little repetitive and annoying after listening to loops of “Go on get durrty!” over and over.
Flawless: Live Street Dance – Access All Areas could have done with a few more probing questions to help bring out each dancer’s character, and the dancers are by no means a small group to get through, splicing interviews from all ten dancers together to answer one question!
The DVD is an interesting look behind the scenes of the Chase the Dream tour. On this DVD alone I would see Chase the Dream on tour. For an idea of what you get and how it’s styled, which aside from their fanbase may not be to everyone’s liking, see my T4 comment.
Flawless: Live Street Dance – Access All Areas is out now.
Buy from Amazon