'Step Up All In'
Director: John Swetnam
Cast: Briana Evigan, Ryan Guzman, Adam G. Sevani, Misha Gabriel Hamilton
Yet another year, yet another 'Step Up' movie freshly baked from the oven. By now, two things are certain in life – death, and a new dance-based movie with a horrible script. Since it's not October yet and we don't have to bear another 'Paranormal Activity' film, we'll get to the other series which is like the gift that keeps on giving.
'Step Up All In' is the latest in the assembly line of the wildly successful 'Step Up' series. The original film came out more than a decade ago and made a star out of Channing Tatum. The only reason why other filmmakers and dancers are trying to make more Step Up films is the fact that Tatum managed to become a leading actor in Hollywood. Also, these films somehow end up making a ton of money. Every single one of the half a dozen films in the series follows the exact same narrative and style – an underdog has to beat a bunch of villainous dancers in a dance-off.
So what do we have in this new film that is different from the rest? Nothing really, as it turns out. 'Step Up All In' is the exact same film once again, with a different soundtrack and dancing styles. No one really watches these movies for the plot, so I'll skip the specific altogether. What really matters in this film is the dancing. And on that front, the film is pretty entertaining. The choreography is excellent, to say the least – every time the dances begin, the film entrances you. Full marks to the filmmakers for delivering some truly stunning dance sequences. The guy who lit the scenes also deserves a hug or two. The camerawork is commendable as well, because you get slightly longer shots where you can actually see the dancing. There is a reason why the film is titled All In – the protagonists from the previous films in the series are all in this movie for a massive dance off. So if you’re a fan of the previous movies, you’ll really dig this one.
The problem is the dance sequences are surrounded by some very lame attempts at building a plot and dialogues. Watching the dance sequences in the theatre is terrific, but you don't have a remote to fast-forward the inane dialogues and 'story'. The filmmakers could just have dropped the pretence to make a film and instead just offered a series of dance sequences.