Movie Review: 'Battle of the Year'
Thanks to the Step Up films, the dance movie genre has gained some traction over the past few years, so much so that there are even 3D movies coming our way.
Battle of the Year
Dir: Benson Lee
Cast: John Peck, Josh Holloway
As far as the ranking goes, there are watchable dance movies, there are dull dance movies, there are bad dance movies, there is a 100 feet of odorous slushy mud and then there is Battle of the Year.
With some truly terrible writing, horrendous direction, lame dialogues and cringe inducing D-movie acting, Battle of the Year is the very pitts of the dance genre and even filmmaking in general. Everything about this movie exudes the ingenuity and charm of a soiled diaper and you wonder how the producers of this film expected audiences to react to the stuff happening on the screen. The story follows the basic beats of every single dance movie ever made -- a couple of guys (Alonso and Blake) try to assemble a team of the best of the best dancers to win a certain competition called Battle of the Year. And to cut to the chase, there really is a gigantic amount to stupidity in the film to wade through to get to the end credits.
The only two good bits you could find in the movie are the catchy soundtrack and the obviously talented, athletic dancers with insane gymnast skills. Unfortunately, like all dance movies, the team of dancers is full of the most unlikely candidates, going against all odds, with cardboard characters, stock situations and lines, formulaic dramatic plot points and unintentionally funny scenarios where the film takes itself too seriously, pretending as if we actually care about the stuff between the various dance routines.
Director Benson Lee who earlier made a documentary on the real-life Battle of the Year fails to go all out to entertain the audience by constantly ramming in the ‘story’ bits, and still stumbles to choreograph or shoot any decent dance sequences.
It doesn’t help that the film stars Chris Brown and is in 3D -- two aspects that make you want to throw a rock at the screen for. Worse, the film makes no effort to showcase the product placement with any subtlety and hurls the brand logos in your face every five minutes. If that sounds like the movie you’d enjoy on the big screen with glasses on, go for it.