Elimination Dance by Michael Ondaatje – The Movie
A crowded ballroom, an orchestra, the master of ceremonies approaches the microphone and asks if anyone has ever forgotten a urine sample at the post office. A man hides his face in his hands and leaves the dance floor with his partner. This is how the elimination dance works: an embarassing situation is mentioned and the couple to whom it has really happened is eliminated.
It isn’t just a game for everyone. It is something serious. It is the dance of life.
Directed and written by Bruce McDonald, Michael Ondaatje and Don McKellar. 9 minutes. 35mm. 1998.
Part of a review by Tom McSorley in Take One, March 22, 1999. “Dreamy and deluxe, this collaborative effort is an absorbing confection of archival images, live-action drama, still photography, spoken word and narration. Deftly stitched into nine rich minutes exploring the seductive and subversive possibilities of dance as social ritual and political powder keg are Ondaatje’s allusive and densely layered writing, McKellar’s penetrating view of the comic possibilities of social life and McDonald’s visually playful film sense. Set in a crowded dance hall where the Iguana Cafe Orchestra swings and sways, the film revolves around an …”