Film Review: Dance is the Highlight in Simplistic ‘Step Up Revolution’

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CHICAGO – The beauty of the movies is their ability to create weird parallel universes, where young dance crews have the choreography skills of a hip-hop Bob Fosse, the time/funding to create this dance and a law enforcement culture that allows it. Welcome to the “Step Up Revolution.”

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.0/5.0
Rating: 3.0/5.0

This the fourth installment of the Step Up series of films, and the first two helped launch the career of Channing Tatum. There is a major difference in this chapter – instead of dance crews competing with one another, they use their choreographic power to create flash mobs. This makes for some energetic and entertaining dance moments in this exercise, but the story between the grooves is ludicrous and laughable. But were there ever such complaints about a Mickey Rooney/Judy Garland similarity back in the day? As in those features, it’s not about the story, it’s about hey-kids-let’s-put-on-a-flash-mob.

Sean (Ryan Guzman) is a guy from the wrong side of the tracks in Miami, if the wrong side of the tracks is now defined by a comfortable middle class house and a hip salsa club down the street. Like Batman, he morphs into the leader of The Mob, a dance crew who stage elaborate flash mobs (planned outbreaks of dancing in public, usually filmed and played on YouTube). They are seeking a monetary prize in a download contest, with the clear winner being YouTube.

Sean works at a hotel, owned by affable land baron from Cleveland named Anderson (Peter Gallagher), and his daughter Emily (Kathryn McCormick). Emily is an aspiring fine arts dancer, in Miami to compete for a spot in a world renown troupe. Emily and Sean meet, dancing of course, and the “Juliet” longs to be in the “Romeo’s” world. She joins The Mob, even when they start protesting her Dad’s hotel project that will bulldoze Sean’s neighborhood. Can dance defeat capitalism? Maybe in this universe.

“Step Up Revolution” opens everywhere July 27th. See local listings for 3D showings, show times and theaters. Featuring Kathryn McCormick, Ryan Guzman, Peter Gallagher, Cleopatra Coleman and Misha Gabriel. Screenplay by Jenny Mayer. Directed by Scott Speer. Rated “PG-13”

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “Step Up Revolution”

Step Up Revolution
Dancers Take to the Streets in ‘Step Up Revolution’
Photo credit: Sam Emerson for Summit Entertainment

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “Step Up Revolution”

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