21 Best Dance Movies and Shows on Netflix (April 2024)

One of the most important and mesmerizing forms of art is dance. It has been said that dance sets one’s soul free. Be it street dancing or contemporary, Hollywood seems to have hit the right notes despite the relatively smaller number of dance movies it has produced. Slowly and steadily, Hollywood is moving towards depicting music and dance as part and parcel of their films. Still, from wonderful documentaries about ballet or tango to heartfelt stories about passion for dancing, here’s a list of really good dance movies on Netflix that you should watch if you have a penchant for it or if you’d like to pursue it as a career.

21. Battle: Freestyle (2022)

Directed by Ingvild Søderlind, this is a sequel to ‘Battle’ (2018) and follows Dancer Amalie (Lisa Teige), whose crew has qualified for Break the Cypher Paris, a dance competition. But after she arrives there, she finds herself conflicted between her love for dance and her estranged mother, Vivian (Ellen Dorrit Petersen), who lives in Paris. How she grapples with this and whether she can protect her relationships from being affected by this are what we see in the drama. ‘Battle: Freestyle’ can be streamed here.

20. Dancing Queens (2021)

Directed by Helena Bergström, ‘Dancing Queens’ follows 23-year-old Dylan Pettersson (Molly Nutley), who dreams of being a professional dancer. But when Victor (Fredrik Quiñones), the lead dancer/choreographer of Queens, a gay drag club, comes to know about Dylan’s talents as she does cleaning duties there, he gives her a chance. But the catch is that she has to perform as a man. Can she do that? To find out how Dylan discovers her true self by performing as someone she is not, you can watch ‘Dancing Queens’ right here.

19. Cuties (2020)

‘Cuties’ is a French drama directed by Maïmouna Doucouré and tells the story of eleven-year-old Amy (Fathia Youssouf), who has to overcome the issues and objections led by the traditional Islamic upbringing that tends to keep her from achieving her dream of joining a dance crew and becoming a dancer. Whether and if yes, how she is able to do so and to what extent is what we see in the movie. You can stream it here.

18. Dance 100 (2023)

A competitive reality series, ‘Dance 100’ looks for the upcoming choreographer from a total of seven participant choreographers. They are to train 100 dancers and compete in a dance competition, and the winner will be chosen by the dancers who serve as the judges as well. The competition entails the teaching process and the personality of the participating choreographers, along with the training and the choreography they bring to the table. You can watch the show here.

17. Dance Dreams: Hot Chocolate Nutcracker (2020)

Directed by Oliver Bokelberg, this documentary showcases American actress/dancer/choreographer Deborah Kaye Allen, aka Debbie Allen, and her students at her dance academy, the Debbie Allen Dance Academy. The documentary is based on the title of the 1892 two-act classical ballet ‘The Nutcracker’ by famous Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, who adapted it from German author E. T. A. Hoffmann’s 1816 short story ‘The Nutcracker and the Mouse King.’ In the film, we are taken behind the scenes of her award-winning holiday version of the ballet that is named ‘Hot Chocolate Nutcracker.’ You can stream the documentary here.

16. Let’s Dance (2019)

Directed by Ladislas Chollat, this French movie stars Rayane Bensetti, Alexia Giordano, Mehdi Kerkouche, and Fiorella Campanella. It tells the story of a guy named Joseph, a hip-hop teacher, who refuses to join his father’s company and instead joins a dance crew intending to win an international hip-hop championship. However, unfortunate circumstances result in the group breaking up. Broken mentally, Joseph comes across classical dance, which helps him regain and realize his true potential as an artist. You can stream the movie here.

15. Move (2018)

A dance docu-series directed by Thierry Demaiziere and Alban Teurlai, ‘Move’ explores dance in a modern experimental way. Hosted by choreographer/dancer Sylvia Camarda, the series looks at dance from different angles, including philosophical and artistic, and shows the different ways in which it can be interpreted. In this way, we get to see a side of dancing that transcends physical movements and becomes something that is connected to our inner selves. You can stream the show here.

14. The Get Down (2016-2017)

A musical drama series created by Baz Luhrmann (‘Elvis‘ (2022)) and Stephen Adly Guirgis, ‘The Get Down’ stars Justice Smith, Jaden Smith, Herizen Guardiola, and Shameik Moore. It is set in the 1970s South Bronx, New York City, and centers on a group of teens via which it showcases the rise of disco and hip-hop. The use of real footage from that time adds to the show’s authenticity and, thereby, its effectiveness. So, if you want to be a part of the rise of the music culture, you can stream the movie here.

13. Jiva! (2021)

‘Jiva!’ is a South African dance drama series created by Busisiwe Ntintili and Bakang Sebatjane and centers on 20-something-year-old Ntombi (Noxolo Dlamini) who aspires to be a dancer. However, her father’s suicide made her sacrifice her dreams and take up the job of a tour guide. But the upcoming national dance competition resuscitates her dream. The question is, will she be able to pursue it again and give herself another chance that will probably serve as her last? Will she be able to face the objections? To find out, you can stream the series here.

12. Dancing Queen (2018)

‘Dancing Queen’ is a documentary series that showcases Alyssa Edwards, aka Justin Dwayne Lee Johnson, an American drag performer/businessperson, who rose to fame after competing in RuPaul’s Drag Race, a reality TV series hosted by drag queen/TV personality RuPaul. It also throws light on her dance studio, Beyond Belief Dance Company, and how she juggles between the different integral aspects of her life. You can watch the series here.

11. The Tribe (2018)

Originally released as La Tribu, ‘The Tribe’ is the compelling narrative of Fidel, a man who had a fiasco at the office while he was caught having sex with the secretary. A year later, Fidel could be seen on the lookout for his mother, Virginia, who had given him for adoption after his birth, citing a lack of finances. Later, he finds her in a hotel where she’s working as a janitor. Instead of meeting her in the hotel, he waits in the pub, where a brawl ensues, with Fidel leaving in haste without the meeting. Virginia later comes to know of Fidel’s amnesia and how he forgets where he comes from. She also learns that Fidel has a penchant for street dance and shapes her relationship with Fidel accordingly. ‘The Tribe’ is a simplistic, entertaining watch for those feeling bored in the afternoon. You can watch the movie here.

10. Battle (2018)

‘Battle’ is the tale of Amalie, a hard-working dancer whose father is in penury, forcing her to give up on her dreams. She meets Michael, a street dancer, and is immediately smitten by his ways, which are very different from others. Fixated between her newfound life with Michael while dealing with financial troubles, she must struggle and find her way out before it’s too late. ‘Battle’ is one of those underrated, masterful gems that deserve applause and is worth your time. You can stream it here.

9. We Speak Dance (2018)

This documentary series explores the different dance forms and cultures around the world through the eyes of trained dancer Vandana Hart. We get to see how the dance forms, while numerous and different from each other, serve the same purpose: connecting humans in one single thread. As Hart travels from Indonesia to France to Nigeria to other places across the globe, the audience is shown the different colors of dance that make us diverse and yet unite us all in a way that is no less than sacred. You can stream it here.

8. Feel the Beat (2020)

Written by Michael Armbruster and Shawn Ku, ‘Feel the Beat’ is a family dance comedy-drama movie produced by Susan Cartsonis. The Elissa Down directorial revolves around April Dibrina, a dancer whose dreams of making it to Broadway are shattered after a series of unfortunate incidents. To make matters worse, she is also evicted from her apartment and is forced to return to her hometown in Wisconsin. While shopping one day, she accidentally meets the New Hope dance teacher, Miss Barb, who is more than eager to invite her to the studio. Once there, April meets a class of dancers, and to her surprise, Miss Barb offers her an opportunity to train them for an upcoming competition. Although she is initially not interested, when April learns that it can ultimately prove to be beneficial for her own career, she accepts the offer. You can watch ‘Feel the Beat’ here.

7. ABCD (Any Body Can Dance) (2013)

The manager of a dance company, Jehangir Khan, has a fallout with their choreographer Vishnu when the latter quit the company and mulls going back to Chennai to find his roots. When he witnesses a bunch of lads using parkour to evade the police, he sees raw talent in them and decides to train and discipline them for a dancing competition. The group of young people eventually are divided into rival factions who could even kill each other if it comes to that. The coming together of factions, auditioning, participating, and winning the competition once and for all forms the remaining narrative of ‘ABCD.’ The movie was widely appreciated as it was out of the league from regular Bollywood films and showcased dance steps, which are on par with what Hollywood does nowadays. You can stream it here.

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6. Step Sisters (2018)

Starring Megalyn Echikunwoke, Lyndon Smith, Eden Sher, and Marque Richardson, ‘Step Sisters’ is a dance comedy movie directed by Charles Stone III. It follows Jamilah, a talented young adult who leads the highly regarded step team of her college while handling the responsibilities of the president of a black sorority and working towards her dream of attending Harvard Law School. So, when things go wrong and a group of sorority girls tarnishes the school’s public image, the responsibility of setting things straight falls on the shoulders of Jamilah. However, she must not only train these girls on the intricacies of step dancing but also help them prepare for a dance competition. Feel free to check out the movie here.

5. Yeh Ballet (2020)

Directed and written by Sooni Taraporevala, ‘Yeh Ballet’ is a dance drama film inspired by a short documentary of the same name. The Julian Sands and Achintya Bose-starrer follows two gifted but underprivileged Mumbai teens whose talent for dance is recognized by an eccentric ballet master. Although the boys are eager to work hard and master the dance form, their family disagrees with their choices, posing a huge problem in their career path. Despite the familial and societal pressure, the teens refuse to give up on their dreams and become immensely dedicated to their goals. You can check out the film here.

4. Homecoming: A Film By Beyonce (2019)

Beyonce is one of the most popular musical artists in the world today. Her concerts are always sold out no matter which part of the world she performs in. To bring the live experience to her fans, Beyonce collaborated with Netflix in making this film, which she has written, directed, and also executive produced. ‘Homecoming’ shows us her headlining performance at the 2018 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, one of the biggest music festivals in the world. The best thing about this film is that it offers us a look into the performance and the tremendous work done backstage, which facilitates the smooth running of the show. This is, without any doubt, one of the best concert films you will ever see. You can do so here.

3. Into the Beat (2020)

Directed by Stefan Westerwelle, ‘Into the Beat’ or ‘Dein Herz tanzt’ is a German teen romantic drama film. The Alexandra Pfeifer and Yalany Marschner-starrer centers on Katya, a teen ballerina who possesses immense dancing talent. With the audition for the New York Ballet Academy about to take place, she stands a great chance of getting a scholarship. However, just a few days before the big audition, Katya meets a group of street dancers who open up a whole new world to her that she never knew existed. It marks the beginning of her self-discovery that poses a life-changing question to the teen ballerina. You can stream the film here.

2. Work It (2020)

Featuring talented actors like Sabrina Carpenter, Liza Koshy, Keiynan Lonsdale, and Michelle Buteau, ‘Work It’ is a dance comedy film directed by Laura Terruso. The movie follows Quinn Ackerman, a clumsy and intelligent high schooler who dreams of getting into her late father’s alma mater by excelling as a dancer. She thus puts in all she’s got to participate in a competition. With a squad of misfits, her chances are slim, but Quinn does not let the doubts dictate her choices and vows to achieve her seemingly impossible dreams. You may stream the film here.

1. Footloose (1984)

A cult classic dance drama at par with the John Travolta starrer ‘Grease’ (1978), ‘Footloose’ follows teenager Ren McCormack who arrives at the little town of Bomont, Texas, only to find out that music and dance are banned there. Himself a rock-and-roll addict, Ren decides to bring back rock to Bomont with help from the rebellious Ariel, his love interest, by organizing a high school prom and convincing the town council. The film stars Kevin Bacon as Ren and Lori Singer as Ariel. The cast also includes John Lithgow, Sarah Jessica Parker, Chris Penn, and Dianne Wiest. You can watch the film here.

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