‘Step Up 2, The Streets’
Multi-cultural dance energy at it’s best
Step Up Two, The Streets is guaranteed to be the talk of the town when it is released on February 14. Talk about love, any pre-teen or teen with the desire to dance or those who simply have a respect for great dancing will want to see this movie. And what’s so cool about it is it’s multi-cultural, unfortunately you can’t tell by some of the commercials on the air.
Remember Flashdance? Well, think Flashdance meets High School Musical without all the singing. Think West Side Story meets Thriller without all the singing and you’ve got Step Up 2, The Streets. Did I mention Singing in the Rain, without all the singing?
We’re greeted with a whole new crop of fresh faces, from the director, Jon M. Chu, a USC Graduate who admits that Gene Kelley’s dance sequence in the rain is one of his favorite dance scenes, to Briana Evigan who plays the lead character Andie who says Michael Jackson was her main dance influence. And then, there is Robert Hoffman who plays the lead character Chase. He too says Michael Jackson was his inspiration. He added that as a very young child, he saw Thriller and he knew he wanted to dance. Hoffman made his motion picture debut in You Got Served.
Evigan makes her screen debut as does most of the cast which makes this movie so fresh and exciting. Most are classically trained dancers with a love for hip hop street dance, a form of self-expression that is uniquely that of the individual and plays well in a group atmosphere.
Step Up 2, The Streets tells the story of Andie (Briana Evigan), a troubled high school student whose mother and father are dead and she’s living with her mother’s best friend in an inner-city community. Andie is part of a notorious dance crew whose antics lead her into trouble. She’s saved when she attends a performing arts high school where she finds a group of students who are outsiders because they listen to a different beat, a hip hop beat, so they keep to themselves, or have teachers constantly correcting them.
These students form their own crew to compete, but are quickly shunned because they are not from the streets; it is believed their pain and passion could be nowhere close to the kids who hang out on the streets and who are faced with a daily struggle for survival and acceptance. But both sides learn that when you have a love for something “it’s not where you’re from...it’s where you’re at.” Both teams are forced to step up their game, and even choose sides.
The dance scenes are electrifying with surprises and rightly so. Director Chu wanted to make a dance movie filled with dancing unlike many movies that have, at most, five dance scenes in the entire movie.
Three choreographers were selected for the film, and they actually battled each other. Dave Scott, a native of Compton is highly respected for his choreography for the hit movie “Stomp the Yard.”
From first kisses, to lively energy, “Step Up 2” will have you dancing in your seats. Needless to say, the soundtrack is jamming. The multi-cultural cast of new talent showcased in this film will leave you wanting to see more of these young individuals.
The first film Step Up was an unexpected hit. Step Up 2, The Streets promises to be an even bigger hit with film audiences.
Step Up 2, The Streets in theaters February 14. Check out MySpace.com/StepUpMovie
- Gail Choice is a video producer/writer. She can be reached by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org