Step Up 4 : Miami Heat

Step Up 4 : Miami Heat
Mandy Griffiths

Did you know the power of dance can take on a million dollar property investment? DID YOU? Well you can, that is the message of “Step Up 4: Miami Heat”. That or dancers have really hot bodies, particularly when the sun is setting on the beach behind them. Which is all the time. Yeah, maybe that’s the message.

“Step Up 4” unites “So You Think You Can Dance” finalist Kathryn McCormick and choreographer Mia Michaels, newcomer Ryan Guzman, and Peter Gallagher, along with a cameo from a beloved character in a previous “Step Up” film. While I don’t want to spoil the surprise, I also don’t want to be responsible for disappointed fans: it’s not Channing Tatum.

I could tell you this incarnation of the “Step Up” series treads familiar ground with romantic leads from opposite sides of the track (exactly which gender is the rich one switches sometimes, so points for effort), and “something” to unite them and have them dancing big at the end, in this case a million dollar property development. But the plot really isn’t the strength of this film. Neither is the dialogue. But what do you want, a plot with good dialogue? Go see “Swimming With Sharks”.

The dancers in this film make up “The Mob”, short for Flash Mob, back when marketing companies hadn’t ruined the concept by commercialising it. They take on unsuspecting venues, get jobs there, there, make reservations for the best table in the house, have amazing outfits that somehow blend in right before they start dancing, shut down the power, ensure there is no competent security guard and/or police but plenty of iPhones to record their shenanigans, take over the music, stop the traffic, create live installation art, and start dancing. You know, the usual for underground dance groups.

But while you need to suspend reality, the choreography and imagination that goes into these routines really is astounding, and there is plenty of it, so if you’re going to see this movie for the dance sequences, and I really can’t think of any other reason why you would, you will leave satisfied. The two leads have great chemistry, and are surprisingly natural in their roles despite their inexperience.

The message of the film is actually how dancing and art can help give everyone a voice, and that’s really kind of nice. Just don’t expect to be surprised by the plot.

Extras : (Unpreviewed)

Mandy Griffiths

One of Moviehole's longest-serving contributors, Mandy has worked her way up the ladder from contributor to Australian co-editor. Also works full-time in publicity.

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