Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Step Up All In: A for dope dance, D for dopey plot

Movie Title:  Step Up All In
PG-13, 1 hour 52 minutes
PG Grade:  A for dancing, D for plot

In a Nutshell:  The Step Up franchise always brings it when it comes to amazing dancing.  This 5th installment’s story line isn’t new or fresh, but the dancing is.  Who watches these movies for the plot anyway? 

The cast is a veritable“Who’s Who” from the popular TV show “Dancing With the Stars.”  (I’ve never missed an episode.)   The sets are bigger and the finale competition is terrific.

Uplifting theme:  Forgiveness.

Things I liked:
  • Alexxa Brava (Izabella Miko) is stunning in all of her exotic costumes.  Check out her shoes and jewelry in all of her scenes.  Even her microphone is "bedazzled."  Did you know she is a ballerina from Poland?  Her legs are amazing.
  • I can’t even begin to list the dope dance moves by the various dancers.  (Don’t I sound so hip and cool when I use the word “dope” in my blog?  Two of my sons are B-Boys, so that makes me cool by relation.)
  • There were a lot of solos, which was kind of nice to see some of our favorites really shine in the spotlight.
  • I saw it in 3D, which was fun, but not necessary for this movie.
  • I can picture the dance numbers from this movie being turned into a Vegas show.

Things I didn’t like:
  • Great dancing, but terrible acting.
  • Nasty dance moves.
  • Did you miss Channing Tatum?  Me too just a little bit... 
  • As far as role models go, some of these characters are far from it.  The lead female dancer,  Andie West (played by the raspy Briana Evigan), makes a mess at her place of work and when the owner sees what she has done, she tells Andie to clean it up or get fired. Andie flippantly says "Clean it up yourself!" and storms out.  What a jerk.  The character, Monster (played by Luis Rosado), walks out in the middle of his job as well.  Yeah, I really want my kids to take responsibility like THAT.
Did you notice?
  • Did you catch choreographer/producer/director Adam Shankman’s cameo as a carnival ride operator in Las Vegas when Sean and Andie go out for a walk at night?
  • This feels like a big commercial for Caesar’s Palace, as well as for the Las Vegas Tourism office.  By the way, there are scenes taken at “The Fremont Street Experience” which is actually NOT on the Strip, but several miles away.
  • Did you know that Ryan Guzman (Sean) has two dance doubles?  Isn’t that cheating?
  • So You Think You Can Dance choreographer Christopher Scott looks so young that he is cast as one of the young guns in the dance crew LMNTRIX.
  • I thought Andie's shirt with the black bathing suit top and the white strips in the back was super cute.  (The one she wears in the basement of Caesar's Palace when they're practicing before the competition.)  Briana Evigan is built solid as a rock.

Funny lines:
  • Sean:  “Let me try this thing I’ve been imagining in my head.”
Andie: “That better be the dancing you’re talking about.”
  • Jasper: “How come postickers taste so much better in Vegas?”
Jenny: “Because they’re eggrolls.”
  • “So it begins…the drama, the passion, the Vortex.”  - Alexxa 
  • "I have been known to get pretty crunk."  - Marcos 
  • Jason (We know him as “Twitch”): “This is your new crew?”
Sean:  “Well, they ain’t my book club.”

Tips for parents:    You’ll see a lot of skin, especially Briana Evignan’s, who plays Andie West.  There is some great dancing, but also a lot of “dirty” dancing and crude moves.  Surprisingly, there is not much profanity.

If you missed the first Step Up movies, you can catch up on them with these:

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