Friday, 1 August 2014

Step Up: All In - review

Five movies in and you really do start to wonder about the art of street dance and whether or not there is some sort of unwritten code within that world that if you are defeated in a public "battle" that you automatically have to disband and live with the humiliation. For one, it never really clear what the rules are and who decides who has won.

But this is exactly what happens to The Mob from Step Up 4: Miami Heat when they are beaten by a group called The Dirt Knights in a nightclub following a string of unsuccessful auditions in Hollywood.

Stubborn group leader Sean throws a strop and decides to stay in LA while his troupe head back to Miami. He creates a new crew in order to enter an America's Got Talent style competition to win a 3 year dance show contract at Caesar's Palace in Vegas Baby, Vegas!

His new crew is comprised of a super group of dancers from the previous films (with the notable exception of Channing Tatum) and they make the finals but, surprise surprise, in order to win the contract they will have to face off against...

Can you guess? Of course you can because these films are more formulaic than... But you don't come to a Step Up to see War and Peace or Romeo And Juliet. You come for the dance sequences and that is ultimately what the film will be judged, just like the groups in Vegas.

Although their use of 3D is still some of the very best in the business, similar to the judges of Britain's Got Talent, there is a feeling of indifference and over saturation setting in over dance groups and for the majority of the film it fails to deliver anything new and exciting that greatly differs or builds upon what has gone before. There are so many times that people can "pop and lock", "robot" and revisit the breakdancing of the Eighties.

It is only the final performance that really "brings it" and delivers a show-stopping Vegas-worthy dance show that features fire and ice and other elemental forces.

So while the final dance-off doesn't put a foot wrong, the series has taken a misstep and perhaps its time to hang up the boots, or tights, or leotard.

2 stars

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