Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Learn to dance, fight, and dance-fight with this breakdown of JCVD's Kickboxer boogie

Illustration for article titled Learn to dance, fight, and dance-fight with this breakdown of JCVDs iKickboxer /iboogiei/i
Screenshot: Zitofilm2

Jean-Claude Van Damme is best known for his incredible talent at beating the snot out of people, but as anyone who’s seen his 1989 classic Kickboxer knows, JCVD is as talented a dancer as he is a fighter. Comedian Mike Camerlengo is looking to help people around the world remember this fact by offering an in-depth analysis of the scene where Van Damme proved, once and for all, that the Muscles From Brussels loves wiggling his hips as much as cracking skulls.

Camerlengo breaks down the two minutes of footage with the kind of keen insight any viewer wishing to study Van Damme’s moves needs. As we watch JCVD head out onto the dance floor, Camerlengo narrates the martial artist’s thought process, beat by beat. “He’s smiling, but make no mistake: This is a negotiation. He’s saying, ‘OK, body, I’m about to start moving my hips. Don’t make me look like a goddamned psycho,” Camerlengo observes. “But his body declines the offer.” Van Damme continues to shake his stuff through a variety of expert dance moves that the video identifies with names like “The Toys Are Coming To Life,” “Grinding With A Cantaloupe,” and “Hula-Hooping With The Lord.”


The tone changes a little when Van Damme gets “real horned up,” evidenced by him doing the splits, which prompts the scene’s extras to rush in and challenge him to a fight. Without missing a beat, JCVD switches gears from lover to fighter, taking on all comers with hallowed dance-combat staples like “The Windshield Wiper Kick” and “The Overexcited Baby Clap.” By the time the scene ends, Van Damme has shown the Janus face of his powerful physique. He possesses a body that’s equally prepared to either kick or shake ass.

Camerlengo has provided a real service. By watching the clip and listening to his commentary over and over, you, too, can learn how to navigate perilous social situations that demand both cool and violent moves.

Send Great Job, Internet tips to gji@theonion.com

Contributor, The A.V. Club. Reid's a writer and editor who has appeared at GQ, Playboy, and Paste. He also co-created and writes for videogame sites Bullet Points Monthly and Digital Love Child.

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