Making the Grades
In The Cutting Edge, Moira Kelly plays Kate, a spoiled figure skater, who goes through partners faster than pantyhose. D.B. Sweeny has the role of Doug, her latest partner, a former hockey player, and now desperate for any job that will let him wear skates. Doug is hunted out by Kate's coach, Anton (played by Roy Dotrice). Kate is frustrated with this big hockey playing bimbo, and the two enter into a love-hate relationship, that eventually has a happy ending.
This film uses all of the stock sports movie elements with the stock sports movie characters. There are no surprises here, just road signs to tell you what is around each corner. Director Paul Glaser must have directed beer commercials sometime in his career, as this film often looks like a long (very long) commercial, with it's sometimes too slick camera moves.
A couple of other elements really bothered me, though. The first is a generalization that all male figure skaters are homosexuals. Perhaps a majority of them are, but when we meet another pair of skaters, we are treated to the raving homosexual stereotype. Doug, on the other hand, is a rough, tough, macho kind o' guy, thanks to his hockey background.
Sex and drinking stereotypes are also available in large quantities. In one scene, Doug and Kate hit the bar to celebrate. Doug does his best to show Kate how to drink like a man. Kate learns quickly. Kate gets drunk. Doug takes Kate to her hotel room. Kate wants Doug to go to bed with her. Doug, being a wonderful guy, says that this is not the way he wants it to be, telling Kate she's too drunk. Doug goes to his room. Doug drinks some more. A knock is heard on his door. It is the female partner of the homosexual we met earlier. She makes a crude comment, and Doug welcomes her into the room. You know the rest (although the PG rating allows us to skip to the morning after.)
What this movie tells viewers is that drinking is fun, and it's OK for the men to get drunk and have a good time, but this is something nice girls should not do. It gives a dim view of figure skating, sex, and male/female roles with a contrived plot.