Shut up and keep moving
AND here you were thinking that if you’ve seen five minutes of one Step Up movie, you’ve seen them all.
Come on now. Who even thinks about Step Up movies anyway?
The makers of the series certainly don’t. For them, as it is for all Step Up fans, nothin’ else counts but the dancin’, dummy.
While the dummies doin’ the dancin’ in Step Up 4: Miami Heat are as interchangeable as ever – everyone’s skill set can be safely listed as abs, attitude and absolutely no acting talent whatsoever – the choreography on display is uniquely inspired. On occasion, it can be enthralling. Look no further than the set- piece sequence that opens the movie.
A Miami traffic jam is hijacked by a flash mob that appears out of nowhere, complete with their own DJ, videographer and, er, open- air installation artist.
Once each end of the thoroughfare is securely blocked, the crew set about gyrating on every available flat surface they can find at blinding speed, and with dazzling syncopation.
Cars begin to arch skywards in time to the beat. The opening and closing of doors add another layer of percussion.
The whole vehicular vista is both exhausting and exhilarating to take in.
Exemplary 3D camera work and some truly virtuoso editing tricks definitely play a part in amping up the electricity on screen, but there can be no denying the charge given off by the package as a whole.
Almost ridiculously, far from blowing its best dance material in the first five minutes, Step Up 4 has at least three more self- enclosed numbers fired with an equally blast- worthy calibre.
At this point, I will add that I have seen every single disposable dance picture of the past decade, all of which range from the barely tolerable ( the original Streetdance) to the blatantly bad ( You Got Served).
On a pure movement basis, Step Up 4: Miami Heat wipes the dancefloor with the lot of them.
Therefore it pains me to mention what transpires when the cast of Step Up 4 pause for wasted breath to service a storyline that could be classified by the UN as torture if read aloud to political prisoners even once.
Let us simply acknowledge there is indeed a competition that must be won to save a neighbourhood from an evil property tycoon, and just leave it at that, shall we?
Quick, let’s get back to the dancing, and restate the bare- midriffed fact there is nothing routine about any of the Step Up 4 routines.
Even the seemingly corny ‘‘ hey, let’s turn a stuck- up art gallery into a downtown disco!’’ sequence turns out much, much better than it could have been.