Cliches Lead the Dance in the Original "Step Up" Review

Dance movies have been around a while, and I’m not talking about musicals. I’m talking about cheesy romantic fluff featuring attractive lead actors strutting their stuff to the popular dance music of the era. Some examples are 1984’s Footloose and 1987’s Dirty Dancing, although the latter film focuses very heavily on the sizzling love story element between the two main characters. The same formula exists in 2006’s Step Up, a hip dance romance film which relies a little too much on cliches and poor acting.

Step Up follows Tyler Gage (Channing Tatum), a street tough guy who gets arrested for vandalizing a local performing arts school. The judge then rules that Tyler perform community service at the very school he vandalized, and once there, he runs into a gorgeous yet somewhat snooty dancer by the name of Nora Clark (Jenna Dewan). Nora’s dance partner gets injured and it just so happens Tyler has some moves of his own. You can guess what happens next.

For some reason, audiences seem to love the dance/romance genre. Step Up is just the first of four installments in this franchise. The fourth is due out next week. I will admit that the dance moves in these films are pretty impressive. The soundtracks are also rather good as they add aural color to the proceedings. The romantic stuff is corny but adds structure to the films. Step Up is not a classic by any means but it will sure give your eyes and ears a nice treat.

Blu-ray Bonus Features

The bonus features for Step Up are very good. There are deleted scenes, bloopers, Making the Moves for Step Up - How the dance sequences were created for the movie, four music videos and lastly, a feature length audio commentary with Channing Tatum, Jenna Dewan and director/choreographer Anne Fletcher.

"Step Up" is on sale July 3, 2012 and is rated PG13. Dance, Drama, Romance. Directed by Anne Fletcher. Written by Duane Adler, Melissa Rosenberg. Starring Channing Tatum.

Jul
21
2012
Randall Unger • Staff Writer

A product of the 1980s, his first cinematic experience was seeing Ghostbusters II with his parents at the tender age of 4. His favorite movies include the Back to the Future TrilogyJurassic Park, Batman and Glengarry Glen Ross. Tom Hanks is his idol and his second home is Comic Con.

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