Reeeeeemix! Are you kidding me? It’s the streets bitch, you betta recognize!
Seriously though, if you are reading this review I would suggest you go see this movie. If you have the slightest interest in dance movies you already know how ridiculous the storylines are as they are the equivalent to pornography, it is just a series of boring scenes slapped in between what you really came to see… the dancing. From that perspective, Step Up 2 is far better than its predecessor as it has better beats, better dance sequences, a better cast and dare I say a better storyline?
Step Up 2 doesn’t pick up where the first film left off, but it does offer a chance for Channing Tatum to return as Tyler Gage as he is friends with our lead Andie (Briana Evigan). Andie is looked at as a misfit as she practices her moves with her “crew” the 410. Don’t ask me what these people do for jobs, if any of them go to school or how the pay for things, just accept the fact that they exist and rehearsals are every day at 4 PM. And don’t be late!
This poses a problem for Andie, however, she has been given her last chance and it involves school at the Maryland School of Arts. Either she makes it there or she is gonna be shipped off to Texas. Ahh snap is right! Ain’t no one shippin’ Andie nowhere. She gives it a shot and soon makes friends and things escalate as the climax of the film is the almighty street dancing competition called “The Streets”. No one knows when it is or where it is. You just gotta be ready… ready to step up to the streets. Snap back one more time…
The entire thing is formulaic, but actually Step Up 2 avoids a few genre cliches. The one cliche I appreciated them avoiding was that Andie did not talk with street slang. She spoke English. Of course she had a few slip ups (don’t we all) – shizzle – but for the most part she was well spoken and it helped in gaining some level of respect for the character. At least it made it easier to take her seriously.
The first Step Up generated $65 million at the box-office, which tells me this flick should top the $100 million mark (no, not seriously) based on the fact that new lead Briana Evigan is light years ahead of Jena Dewan in looks (seriously) and especially dance moves. In the first film director Anne Fletcher did all the choreography and I must say it pretty much stunk. However, here in the sequel director John Chu has brought in Hi-Hat who choreographed How She Move, Stick It and plenty of music videos for the likes of Missy Elliot and it is a vast improvement. This leads me to the soundtrack, which is filled with music far better than what most dance films have to offer. There are at least five tracks that I already have burned to CD and a sixth that is just a little too slow, but still good.
Step Up 2 the Streets is not a classic film by any stretch of the imagination. However, if you are paying to see this movie and you don’t know what you are in for I have no compassion for you. The plot is thin, the acting is second rate, but none of that matters if the dancing and the film itself are entertaining. There is some great choreography in this flick and the final dance sequence is fantastic. There’s some humor, and if you have a good natured crowd, as I did, you should enjoy yourself.