Street Dances – Bucking / Flexing / Jookin
This year’s dance documentary series brings us specialities of underground dance styles born in the USA. We have the chance to learn about the founders and their idols, the origin of movements, cultic spots and significant events of Bucking, Flexing and Jookin. Dancers speak about taboos and tension in society, daily life and family liaisons. Tragic destinies and success stories woven with a bit of Memphis roller-skate craziness, cheerleader girls and boys, extravagant costumes anddance battles. Big city subcultures at close.
Bucking, also known as “j-setting”, was originally invented in the 1970s by the Jackson State J-Settes, the dance team for the marching band at Jackson State University, a historically black university in Mississippi. A woman named Shirley Middleton was the one who put down her baton and started bucking on the field.
This dance style is characterized by a lead and follow format where one dancer initiates a series of high-energy dance moves, and the other dancers join in the movement. J-Setting features specific dance steps based on Prancing J-Settes marching techniques including the “J-Sette Walk,” the “Salt and Pepper,” the “Strut,” and the “Tip Toe”.
During the late 1970s, African American gay men who were fans of The Prancing J-Settes regularly attended the dance team’s practice sessions, and performances at college football games and other events. Young gay men brought the J-Settes dance style back to their home towns, and to gay nightclubs around the nation.
Directed by Jamal Sims
Cast: Anthony Davis
Produced by Fenton Bailey, Randy Barbato, Jordan Brendan Finnegan, Felipe Linz, Taj Paxton, Pamela Post, Jonathan Tummons, Tucker Wells
Music by David Benjamin Steinberg
Cinematography by John Orphan, Keith Worthington
Editing by Felipe Linz
Frameline San Francisco International LGBTQ Film Festival, 2018, Best Documentary
Miami Film Festival, 2018, Best Documentary
Out on Film, Atlanta, 2018, Best Documentary
L.A. Outfest, 2018, Outstanding Documentary Feature
Curator: Gábor PINTÉR