To the Strictly Ballroom Site, where we provide you information on the characters from the movie Strictly Ballroom!
The three characters we are going to be providing information for you are Barry Fife, Les Kendall and Charm, who are all on
the board of the Australian Dancing Federation and all have a impact on the film. Barry Fife and Les Kendall have the biggest impact
on the film by manipulating Scott, while Charm's biggest impact in the film is pulling the plug on the music during Scott and Fran's dance.
Strictly Ballroom Plot
Scott Hastings is a champion caliber ballroom dancer, but much to the chagrin of the Australian ballroom dance community, Scott believes in dancing "his own steps". Fran is a beginning dancer and a bit of an ugly duckly who has the audacity to ask to be Scott's partner after his unorthodox style causes his regular partner to dance out of his life. Together, these two misfits try to win the Australian Pan Pacific Championships and show the Ballroom Confederation that they are wrong when they say, "there are no new steps!"
Background About Strictly Ballroom
Strictly Ballroom is the name of a 1986 play and its 1992 film adaptation. The play was written by Baz Luhrmann and Andrew Bovell, and film by Baz Luhrmann and Craig Pearce. The film was directed by Luhrmann. The film's tagline is: "A life lived in fear... is a life half lived."
"I'm Barry Fife, chairman of the Australian Dancing Federation"
Summary on Barry Fife
Barry Fife is the character played by Bill Hunter in Strictly Ballroom. He features as the Federation President Of Dancing Australia. Barry Fife begins the film as a well-respected part of the ballroom dancing community.
As the movie progresses you begin to see a different side of him. He changes from a nice man to sleazy and dishonest. . It is his influence that shapes the events throughout the movie as he lies, cheats and laughs at his actions. A great quote towards the deceitful personality is “Well, of course, you can dance any steps you like! But that doesn't mean you'll... win.” This shows you that Barry is unfair in all aspects especially in the way he treats people.
He betrays Scott to stop him winning the Pan pacific because he is doing something that Barry believes will threaten his job. As he says, “Where do you think we'd be if everyone went around making up their own steps?” and Scott replies, “Out of a job.” It also becomes apparent that Barry also betrayed Scott’s Dad, when he was at the prime of his career. Barry main traits only consist of the cheap but somehow likeable sleazy bad guy we often see in movie films.
Barry's most character defining lines.
Barry Fife: There are no new steps!
Barry Fife: Where do you think we'd be if everyone went around making up their own steps? Scott: Out of a job.
Barry Fife: [referring to Ken Railings] Let's not forget, Les, that a Pan Pacific Champion becomes a hero, a guiding light to all dancers, someone who'll set the right example.[Meanwhile, on the dance floor] Liz: [fake smile] You've been drinking! Ken Railings: Bullshit! Push it! Liz: You bloody have!
Barry Fife: If you can't dance a step, you can't teach it, and if you can't teach it - we might as well all pack up and go home. With young Liz available again, you've got a chance to get your status quo vadis back... so to speak.
Barry Fife: Well, of course, you can dance any steps you like! But that doesn't mean you'll... [Slam into a close-up of Barry's mouth] ...win.
Movie Clip - Barry Put's Scott With Tina Sparkle Barry Fife is very Manipulative, he controls every one to get what he wants, and this is a prime example.
Barry Fife is "Bill Hunter"
Bill Hunter (born February 27, 1940) is an Australian television, film and stage actor.
Hunter started out in Australian television in the 1960s, and became a prolific performer in television and feature films, in which he often played the strong, opinionated, archetypically gruff Australian whose exterior belies a softer heart.
Some of his most notable movie roles include Gallipoli (1981), Scales of Justice (1983), Strictly Ballroom (1992), Muriel's Wedding (1994) and The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994). He also provided the voice of the dentist in Finding Nemo (2003). In 2007, he returned to his role in The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert in the Australian touring production of Priscilla. He also portrayed United Nations Sec. Gen. Spencer Chartwell in the American science fiction series Space: Above and Beyond.
A painting of Bill Hunter by artist Jason Benjamin won the Packing Room Prize in conjunction with the 2005 Archibald Prize.
Les is Scott’s coach; and he has been since Scott was only 6 years old. He has shaped Scott’s dancing with traditional steps and when Scott doesn’t conform to this Les tells him sternly to quit his 'crowd pleasing steps'. This becomes one of the most amusing scenes in the film as Les arrests Scott mid stroke through his studio and pulls him into the dance position, in this position Les commands Scott.
Les does what he is told more then what he thinks. Along with Shirley and Barry he provides the conformist pressure on Scott as he blindly follows what is expected of him and is unable to make his own decisions.
His lack of individuality is a defining characteristic in who, Les Kendall is, and what his impact is on the film.
Throughout the movie we see Les in a blue suit this shows him as a nice chap and a light hearted person in the end Les becomes good and works out Barry fifes evil scheme.
Les Kendall is "Peter Whitford"
• Uncle Julius, My Brilliant Career, Analysis, 1979
• Bodor, With Prejudice, 1982
• Bert Wolfe, Phar Lap (also known as Phar Lap: Heart of a Nation), Twentieth Century-Fox, 1983
• George Baines, Careful, He Might Hear You, 1983
• Thompson, Dead-End Drive In, New World Pictures, 1986
• Terry, Running from the Guns, 1987
• Steward, Warm Nights on a Slow Moving Train, Millimeter Films, 1988
• Les Kendall, Strictly Ballroom, Miramax, 1992
• Mr. Todd, Dad and Dave: On Our Selection, Roadshow Entertainment,1995
• Mr. Ahearn, Oscar and Lucinda, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1997
• Tour manager, Passion (also known as Passion: The Story of Percy Grainger), 1999
• Stage manager, Moulin Rouge, Twentieth Century-Fox, 2001
• The Man Who Sued God, Icon Entertainment International, 2001
• Himself/Various, 66 and All That, 1966
• Guy Sutton, Number 96, 1976
• The Henderson Kids, 1985
• Prime Time, Australian television, 1986
• Vision Escalator, ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corp.), 1971
• Cass, 1978
• Water under the Bridge, 1980
• Herbert Evatt, The Last Bastion, 1984
• Mr. Donaldson, Winners: Top Kid, 1985
• Computer Ghosts, 1987
• Mr. Sharlton, Come in Spinner, 1990
• Administrator, The Three Stooges, ABC, 2000
• Bodyline, 1984
• Poof, "A Dream before Dying," Chopper Squad, 1978
• Russell, "Stakeout," Police Rescue, ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corp.), 1992
• Also appeared as Detective Sergeant Gordon, Prisoner: Cell Block H.
• By Candlelight, Sydney, Australia, 1973
• Keeping Mum!, Marion Street Theater, Sydney, 1993
Charm is Barry Fifes Girlfriend in the movie strictly ballroom.
In the movie strictly ballroom Kris McQuade plays a tarty character that is sleeping with the head of the dancing federation (Barry Fife). Charm has only a few appearances throughout the movie, which her main scene is at the end when she turns off the music when Fran and Scott are dancing. Charm comes across as a bit of a gold digger and we can tell she is defiantly not with Barry for his dashing good looks. She is the sort of person who is only after money and is only attracted to Barry because of his status, people look up to him and that is what Charm seeks. She is portrayed as shallow and very plastic and used in the movie to display Barry and his personality.
Charm is Kris McQuade
Kris McQuade was born in 1952 and is an Australian actress.
The films that she has been in, include: The Love Letters from Teralba Road, Kostas, Fighting Back, Lonely Hearts, Goodbye Paradise, The Coca-Cola Kid, Strictly Ballroom, Billy's Holiday and December Boys.
Television Shows that she has been in, include: Fields of Flame, Fields of Fire, Palace of Dreams, Certain Women, Skyways, A Country Practice, The Flying Doctors, Boys From The Bush, Wildside, Grass Roots, Blue Heelers, Stingers and Supernova.