The film presents dancing as a way for the people of Los Angeles to express their frustration and release their negativity through the art of dance. Some of the dancers spoke about feeling oppressed and angry by the lack of after-school options, and they agreed that dancing was a positive alternative.
Growing up in a low-income neighborhood, I had a chance to see some of the ideas that were discussed in the film. Lack of after-school activity led to many students loitering and hanging around with people they should not have. My town decided to combat this problem by building a game room into a local library that was walking distance away from my neighborhood.
While dancing in LA and the game room in my home town prevented the students from being exposed to gang violence, they do not solve the underlying problem. There are clear systemic issues with how the city treats its people. The low-income families are left to their own device, far removed from the luxuries and amenities that the middle to high-income families enjoy from the same government. In LA, lack of education and the constant presence of gangs are the key issues, while income disparity was the major issue in my town. The best example of this underlying issue can be seen when an innocent girl was murdered due to “being at the wrong place at the wrong time.” What does Rize say about the systemic issues of LA? Should we accept dancing as the perfect alternative? These are the questions that I couldn’t stop thinking about as I watched the film.