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Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Step Up 3D

For those of you worried that fully engaging with the third instalment of the Step Up series would require an extensive knowledge of the plots of Step Up and Step Up 2 The Streets – and yes, characters from both those films do return in this film – fear not: apart from having the exact same plot, this really has nothing to do with the earlier films.

It’s the exact same plot because all dance movies have the exact same plot: a bunch of young, vaguely “street” characters hang out either at a dance school or some well equipped dance studio talking about how much they love to dance. There’s a girl (Australia’s own Sharni Vinson) and a guy (Rick Malambri) for the romance angle, and they’re usually white while everyone else comes from all four corners of the globe – including, in the case of Moose (Adam Sevani), geeksville. Then the good guys run out of cash so they need to win the contest to pay their debts (and beat the always present evil dance posse), there’s a betrayal or two, and all this is spaced out with a bunch of big dance numbers that are the only real reason anyone’s come to the cinema.

Being in 3D does makes some of the numbers impressive, but there are a few minor technical wobbles that occasionally make things seem a little too artificial – and as the whole point of watching dance is seeing people actually dance, it’s a serious hiccup. Still, as dance movies go this does what it’s supposed to with enjoyable slickness, which – until a 21st Century Fred Astaire comes along and really makes the genre sing – as about as good as it currently gets.

Anthony Morris (this review appeared in Forte #481)

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