The first Step Up was bad enough, only Channing Tatum (tantalizing eye-candy + acting skills) and Jenna Dewan's (talented dancer) relational story kept the film afloat. Unfortunately for Step Up 2, there is no story- or the story is barely hanging on by the thread of the main actress' slowly unraveling clothing. The acting is questionable and the dancing is entertaining, but not mind-blowing. Even though these are professional dancers with a professional choreographer, search YouTube and you'll find more impressive dancing.
The nearly-nonexistent story goes like this: Troublemaker, gang member, Andie, gets into MSA, an expensive private school as a charity case. Her "Street Dancing" is far too risque for Director Collins, who must teach her ballet (which proves to be completely pointless later). Andie finds the hottest guy in school, who has a mean ex-girlfriend, and they come up with a dance for their crew to compete in the Streets, a contest for street dancers. But can their relationship survive when they're from such different worlds? Sound familiar? In the first Step Up, Tyler Gage (Channing Tatum) is a troublemaker, gang member who goes to MSA for community service. He finds the hottest girl in school, who has a mean ex-boyfriend, and they come up with a dance for their crew to compete in the school talent show. But can their romance survive when they're both from such different worlds? Hmmm...
Anyway, Andie must face discrimination at the school, payback from her old crew, and Director Collins for the chance to prove that she's good enough for MSA, for the Streets, and for her place in the world. It sounds dramatic, but it's really just disappointing. It's a rehash of the same story with some new dance moves.
The new dance moves are entertaining, and impressive, don't get me wrong, but it's Tatum's cameo in the beginning of the film that provides the hook. The rest of the dancing is great, and the end dance is pretty impressive, but it just can't make up for the rest of the film.
Conclusion: Skip it in theaters, skip it on dvd, check out the dances on YouTube - it's just not worth it.
Rated PG-13 for language, some suggestive material and brief violence.
See the trailer
- To prepare for the role of Chase Collins, Robert Hoffman actually went into the Baltimore city underground dance scene and participated in competitive break dance circles.