The 12 Best Dance Movies On Netflix (Updated September 2022)


Dance is, perhaps, one of the most captivating art forms in existence. Whether it is a ballerina twirling hypnotically or hip hop dancers moving in unnatural ways, dance grabs your attention.

Netflix currently has an excellent array of dance films for you to rent on DVD or stream at any time. These are the best of them:

1. A Ballerina’s Tale (2015)

A Ballerina' s Tale Official Trailer 1 (2015) - Misty Copeland Documentary HD

A Ballerina’s Tale is a documentary that follows the beautiful Misty Copeland through her struggles as a dancer and explores how she became the first African American principal dancer in the American Ballet Theater. Misty describes her many trials not fitting the classical ballerina standards.

She also talks about an injury that she didn’t let set her back. This documentary is a unique perspective on the modern world of classical ballet.

2. High Strung (2016)

High Strung Official Trailer 1 (2016) - Jane Seymour Movie HD

This drama is jam packed with art and talent, drawing from every vein of the performing arts. It takes place in New York City (where else?), with one of the main characters, a dancer at the Manhattan Conservatory of the Arts, and the other a violinist with unappreciated talent.

The two go through independent struggles with the pressures of their craft and end up joining several other musicians and a hip hop crew to perform at a classical event where the stakes are $25,000.

3. Desert Dancer (2015)

Desert Dancer Official Trailer #1 (2015) - Freida Pinto Movie HD

This movie, based on the true story, tells the tale of Afshin Ghaffarian, and his struggle to become a dancer in his home of Iran, where it is forbidden. He and his friends come together to form a makeshift dance company that they build up from nothing.

In Afshin’s fight for dance, he doesn’t give up, despite all obstacles. Every setback makes him stronger.

4. Mr. Gaga (2017)

Mr. Gaga Official Trailer 1 (2017) - Documentary

Mr. Gaga is a dance documentary about the man who created one of the most captivating styles of dance in existence: Gaga. The creator, Ohad Naharin, is from Kibbutz and has created this style using many elements of dance.

This documentary shows his rise to fame and how captivating his work is.  

5. Step up (2006)

Step Up Trailer (2006)

When a movie has Channing Tatum in it, can you go wrong? After vandalizing a performing arts school, Tyler Gage (Channing Tatum) is forced to do volunteer work. He meets an up and coming ballet dancer, Nora (Jenna Dewan Tatum), who is looking for a partner to perform with her at the school’s big gala.

Tyler ends up accidentally auditioning to be Nora’s partner and the two pull off a stunning performance.

6. Step Up 2 The Streets (2008)

Official Trailer | Step Up 2 The Streets | Screen Bites

Another hip hop appreciation movie shows the separation and unity there is to be found between different styles of dance. In this film, a street hip hop crew goes up against another dance crew compiled from the outsiders of a performing arts school. This movie encourages the breaking of barriers between different styles of dance.

7. Flashdance (1983)

Flashdance (1983) Trailer #1 | Movieclips Classic Trailers

Although it may be hard to believe, Flashdance is one of the best dance films ever made. Directed by Adrian Lyne, it’s a faux-gritty dance melodrama with Jennifer Beals as a showgirl with a romantic relationship with a steel mill boss. The film has one of the most famous bra scenes in movie history, as well as a heartwarming audition scene at the Pittsburgh Conservatory of Dance.

The movie even makes use of a body double to provide a realistic dancer.

While Flashdance is not particularly good, it is a cultural touchstone of the ’80s, making it one of the best dance movies ever made. In addition to its music, it was also a major inspiration for fashion in the ’80s, inspiring the off-the-shoulder dress.

It was also a touchstone in the world of pop culture. At the time, musicals were all but dead, but this film capitalized on that and became one of the best dance movies ever made.

8. Fame (1980)

Fame Official Trailer #3 - Charles S. Dutton Movie (2009) HD

Another great movie about dance is Fame. Although it’s not a typical dance movie, Fame is more of a movie about the making of a movie than a dance movie. It features characters who dance, and a dream sequence with Cyd Charisse. The storyline is full of dance, with characters learning hip hop and achieving success.

As with the other dance movies from the 80s, Fame was popular with audiences and critics alike, but some still disagree with its politics.

9. West Side Story (2021)

Steven Spielberg's "West Side Story" | Official Trailer | 20th Century Studios

Steven Spielberg’s remake of West Side Story is also highly anticipated. Its cast of talented dancers has garnered an impressive IMDb score. It’s not the first dance movie to strike a chord in the heart of movie lovers, but it’s definitely one of the best.

In the meantime, enjoy the latest films about the era of dance. They’re sure to get you moving!

10. Footloose (1984)

Footloose (1984) Trailer #1 | Movieclips Classic Trailers

For years, fans of the 1980s musical film Footloose have debated the question of whether this is the best dance movie ever made. This movie is essentially a two-hour music video, and it has changed the way movies use the soundtrack and advertising.

However, that doesn’t mean it is the best dance movie. In fact, it might be one of the worst. Here are some reasons to avoid it, and why it’s not one of the best dance movies.

In the film, Tom Cruise was considered for the lead role, but he was unable to attend due to the filming of All Right Moves. The producers wanted Tom Cruise for the role, but he was already committed to All the Right Moves and would be too bulky to play the part of Ren.

In the end, Christopher Atkins was cast as the role. It was also reported that Kevin Bacon was offered a major role in Christine, but opted to take Footloose instead.

The movie is based on a true story. The town of Elmore City had made public dancing illegal in 1861, and the high school students from this small town demanded the ban be lifted just in time for the prom. The movie’s protagonist, Ren, is a charismatic teen who goes to great lengths to get what he wants. In this film, he becomes the victim of his own defiance.

The film also features Sarah Jessica Parker, who made her feature film debut as Janey Glenn. The film also stars a young Helen Hunt, Shannen Doherty, and Robin Antin, who founded the Pussycat Dolls. If you’re looking for a movie that will make you want to dance all night, Footloose is the perfect choice.

The storyline itself is a classic, and its dance scenes will get you moving and grooving.

11. Purple Rain (1984)

Purple Rain (1984) Official Trailer - Prince, Apollonia Kotero Movie

If there is a movie about the power of music, it’s Purple Rain. With its chart-topping soundtrack, this movie transforms and uplifts anyone, from the clumsy to the powerful. It also makes an excellent celebration of the good that music can do. Purple Rain also features a live performance by Prince.

Director Albert Magnoli also incorporates concert footage for the film, and it’s fun to watch the Battle of the Bands sequences. But what makes this film so special is its depiction of how Prince transforms his body into a dancing machine by performing on stage.

This movie is a classic example of the ’80s “backstage musical.” It stars a young Prince, known as The Kid, as he battles rival musician Morris Day for a spot at the legendary Minneapolis club First Avenue. The movie also deals with Prince’s violent home life and abusive father.

Regardless of your personal opinion, you will be blown away by Prince’s dazzling stage presence and ferocious energy.

The film is a joy to watch – especially if you’re a passionate dancer. The soundtrack is a joyous celebration of the human body and spirit. The film’s characters are memorable, but they are also likable. There’s no one who won’t recognize the dancers in the scene.

Moreover, the dance moves themselves are fantastic. And what’s more, the story line behind the songs is quite uplifting.

When Prince died in 2016, the film gained a renewed popularity. The movie’s soundtrack was crowned the best ever in 2007 by Vanity Fair. It was a big hit, hitting No. 1 on the iTunes charts in the U.S. and the song was nominated for the Grammys. It has even received some praise from the critics:

12. Billy Elliot (2000)

Official Show Trailer | Billy Elliot The Musical

In the ballet movie Billy Elliot, an 11-year-old coal miner’s son stumbles upon a ballet class during a boxing lesson. During the class, Billy demonstrates his natural talent for dance, surprising even his own teacher. The class’s strict instructor, Mrs. Wilkinson, has a tart tongue and a never-ending supply of cigarettes.

Billy, however, demonstrates tremendous potential, and the teacher becomes enthralled with Billy’s potential.

The story of Billy Elliott is an interesting one, involving a boy in a mining town in the UK during the 1984 miners’ strike. While his father is pressing Billy into more manly pursuits, he secretly switches from boxing to ballet.

While Billy is a coming-of-age story, this dance movie is an excellent example of a film with a gender-normalizing parent plot.

As his talent grows, his father and his brother discover his hidden potential.

This dance movie has received a lot of positive buzz. Although it’s not a Hollywood rollercoaster, Billy Elliot still manages to have powerful emotional moments. Jamie Bell’s performance as Billy Elliot is a standout, as his charisma and dancing are absolutely fantastic.

As a man, Bell is one of the most masculine and powerful performances in a movie this popular. Just like the real life Billy Elliot, his performance is equally impressive.

Final Thoughts

The great thing about dance movies is that you get a mix of romance and reality.  If you liked some of these dance documentaries, check out these documentaries. If you were more into the stories that happened in combination with the dancing, maybe check out our list of the Top 54 Romantic Movies on Netflix.

Stephen R.

Hi my name is Stephen and I am the founder of NetflixUpdate.com. I created this site to help give some information about what is happening in the streaming world.

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