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Overall Rating

Awesome: 10.87%
Worth A Look32.61%
Average: 28.26%
Pretty Bad: 19.57%
Total Crap: 8.7%

5 reviews, 16 user ratings

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by Scott Weinberg

"THE movie to watch while on Ecstasy...or if you're just curious."
4 stars

Rarely does a movie have a 'target audience' like Greg Harrison's Groove does. Made by and for the rave-goers of the world, this movie succeeds due to large portion of authenticity mixed with a largely successful sense of storytelling. If the "rave scene" holds absolutely no interest for you, definitely look elsewhere. But for those familiar with the scene, or those looking for a brief peek, Groove is a funky treat.

The bare-bones plot centers around an illegal party in an abandoned warehouse. Raves like this are publicized through word-of-mouth, emails, voice messages and various other subtle means. Partygoers from miles around show up at the "map point", where a fellow partier then informs people where the shindig is. All of these covert operations are due to one very important point: Raves are illegal.

One of the main attractions of a party like this is drugs. Mainly Ecstasy. These parties are planned in advance and all measures are taken to assure its secrecy. Based on personal experience, it rarely happens that way. The main feature of a rave is of course a massive dance floor where a variety of DJs rule the roost. The music is kinetic and pulse-pounding, the light shows and dancers are manic and everyone seems to like rubbing up against each other.

The party that Groove focuses on is filled with a mixture of various characters. We have the salty old X-pro, the unsure newcomer, the newly engaged couple, the harried party organizer and a gaggle of DJs waiting to turn the room upside down. As the party opens, the various characters take their E, check on one another and wait for things to get funky. It doesn't take long.

The main character (the rave "virgin") even gets his E for free! One of the few breaks from realism comes from how everything at this rave seems complimentary. On behalf of former ravers everywhere, I say yeah, right! I once knew a guy who spent $121 dollars at a party like this one night...and he had no idea what he spent it on. We still laugh about it today...when his wife isn't around.

What's most notable about Groove is the outstanding way in which in accurately depicts the night club lifestyle. From the look of the empty warehouse to the tones and inflections employed by the characters on E, this is obviously a film from a guy who's "been there". Some of the earlier scenes especially reminded me of the ridiculously retarded partying I used to do back when I was young enough to have fun and not worry about getting a stroke or kidney stones. Yuk.

What Groove lacks in a strong narrative structure, it makes up for in its authenticity and outright energy. Perhaps best described as "half-musical", this movie spends a lot of time lingering on the gyrating dance floors, sweaty gals jammin' and a whole lotta next-generation hippie love.

While many of the acting performances are forgettable, a few solid turns shine through: Lola Glaudini gives a fantastic performance as the party-weary Leyla and you may recognize Rachel True (from The Craft) as a sympathetic yet hardcore rave gal. Also noteworthy is that several of the initially-familiar subplots don't end up the way you'd expect and there's a refreshing honesty in several of the more serious scenes.

If you're already a fan of raves, house music or just Ecstasy in general, you've probably already discovered Groove. Those wishing to take a look inside the rave world may not get the entire story with this movie, but it's definitely the closest you'll ever get...unless you take the plunge for yourself! Me? I'm retired.

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originally posted: 10/10/01 12:11:25
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User Comments

11/02/05 Marius This movie rulez....I wanna see more of this type 5 stars
8/25/05 tatum Trance music is great, story was done better in "American Graffitti" 3 stars
9/01/04 A upton good tunes 4 stars
10/10/03 alan olbert it captures the real rave culture.I've been to a lot of raves and it hits the nail right on 5 stars
10/01/03 Lance I loved the way it was shot. Story was slow, but I thought it totally worked for the feel. 5 stars
4/16/03 Marcos aka Dj Cancer WWWWWHHHHOOOOOAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
10/18/01 Catherine Schneider As a rave-goer I was extremely disappointed. 1 stars
9/07/01 darrin perrone great soundtack!totally sucked ass however 1 stars
8/25/01 crappy corny corny corny 2 stars
4/16/01 K Dog Made me want to dance. 4 stars
2/21/01 Rocket Boy Embarassing to the rave culture, this electronic soap opera is the worst film of 2000. 1 stars
12/22/00 Monday Morning You kids nowadays. Christ, I just don't know. You call that music? Get a haircut... 2 stars
12/11/00 The Bomb 69 I wanted to like it but it was slow and only had a few interesting moments 2 stars
7/17/00 Ace there are reasons why some movies are independent, and not backed by anyone -total cliche 1 stars
7/07/00 Thor-Leo Really enjoyed it 4 stars
6/13/00 tina yay! 5 stars
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  09-Jun-2000 (R)


  30-Nov-2000 (MA)

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