Video Review: Tina Turner "Private Dancer"

Tina Turner picks up her lipstick while sitting at her vanity and stares into the mirror.

She arrives at a party and scours for dance floor for available men. A businessman spots and places a nickel in her palm. They begin to dance.

Inside a dusty mansion, she walks on a checkered floor in a room with geishas. The geishas fan themselves. On a stand, a ballerina pirouettes among the cobwebs.

A magician pours dust over body, startling her. In the main room, a dead bride and groom dance in perfect motion. She watches as a sailor pirouettes He tosses his hat to her and she catches it. A wealthy couple dance, tape binding them together.

In silhouette, a woman dances with a bull. Two women throw themselves at an officer.

Women in gold kick their legs on stage as money falls from the ceiling and onto the dining tables. A little boy and girl dance. The little boy stops and turns his back on her.

A young man and woman perform a dance routine.

In a room, she leans against a chair as a group of dancers continue the routine. The young man tilts her chin with his hand.

Turner dances on top of a cake stand with geishas next her. A geisha fans herself alone in a room. She dances with a young man while an older woman stands guard. People drop roses over her body on the dance floor and clap.

A tear falls as she dances with the first man. She shoves him away from her and leaves the party.

Rating: 3/5

Tina Turner attends a party, hoping to find some work. After several years of selling her body to strangers, she can no longer can do it. The young businessman owns her for however he wants. There is no freedom or control while her madam hovers over her, questioning her on how many men she had and what opportunities she missed.

She thinks of the possible 9 to 5 career she gave up in order to make thousands in a night. The men who request her services, often married themselves, detach themselves from her. Sometimes, she is an ear for her clients, who may want to complain about their lives. Other times, she’s a violent escape. Some regulars believe she is theirs and demand that she available at all times. She has no life outside of sex.  Ten years ago, she viewed the office job as stifling and boring. Now, she wishes she had some experience filing.

The businessman grips her fingers and whispers what he would like to do to her in ear while they dance. There is no love or romance, she thinks as she cries, it’s an illusion. Love can’t exist for her. She walks away, unable to be an object anymore.

Director: Brian Grant Year: 1984


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Pam Avoledo Administrator
Pam Avoledo spends her time binge-watching classic teen dramas and stands firm in her pro-Leyton stance. She also received her journalism degree in 2006 from Oakland University. Her work has been published in the White Wall Review, Sledgehammer Lit , Greatest City Collective & 45 Magazine and forthcoming in Daily Drunk Mag\'s Kristofia anthology.

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