Videos are rated on a scale of one star (a loser) to five stars (a classic). ** 1/2 "Masters of Tap."
Home Vision. $39.95.
Every time the great Charles (Honi) Coles begins to dance, this hour-long, 1983 British documentary becomes well-nigh indispensable. The brief performance segments featuring Chuck Green and Will Gaines also keep interest high, despite camera-work that is literally pedestrian: close-ups of feet. Unfortunately, much of the program is instructional--mostly Coles giving classes to a large group--and some of that very rudimentary indeed. Coles has fascinating things to say about his career and the early New York tap milieu, but otherwise the history of tap presented here remains unreliable in its emphases and conclusions, as well as being cheaply produced (no film clips, only stills). Strictly for specialists.