And Then We Danced is a Swedish-Georgian LGBT+ romance centered around a Georgian dance troupe. Following a young man, Merab, who trains at the National Georgian Ensemble alongside his dance partner Mary. His role in many of the dances is challenged by the arrival of Irakli, but it quickly becomes clear that there is an attraction there as well.
As an LGBT+ romance the film follows a lot of the tropes that we see, particularly in European cinema, as the two must hide the attraction to one another from a society that would not accept them, something the film lets us know early on with gossip about some of the Ensemble’s other dancers. But And Then We Danced does do a good job of building their romance up slowly over the course of the film, and it really is a believable if fairly predictable one. Similarly the story threads of Merab’s relationships with Mary and his brother David are similarly touching and well done, but something that we’ve seen before.
The film really stands out with its dance sequences. I am no dancer, and certainly don’t know anything about Georgian dance, but the dancing in the film was fantastically well done. Partially down to Levan Akin’s direction of these sequences, but mostly down to the performers, particularly Levan Gelbakhiani as Merab. Ana Javakishvili and Bachi Valishvili as Mary and Irakli are fantastic in the dance scenes as well. This is what helps And Then We Danced elevate itself above the standard storytelling, that you likely will have seen a number of times before.