Film: 'Street Dance 2'; Director: Max Giwa, Dania Pasquini; Actors: Tom Conti, George Sampson, Sofia Boutella; Rating: *1/2
There's something very raw, human and enticing about movies that involve physical action, be it action or dance films. These become a celebration of the potential of the human body, of mind over matter, and of matter (actor's bodies) defying the viewers' mind.
It thus takes more effort for a dance or action film to fail than it does to succeed. That is the reason that since 'Step Up' in 2006 brought dance movies to the streets, there has been a spate of movies based on the same template.
Yet, even when you closely follow a set, successful template, the final film can still end up becoming such a bad mess that though it will not fail because of the inherent template, you cringe at the laziness of the team that made it.
'Street Dance 2' is one such film that boasts of some good moves but is let down by insufficient screen dance time and direction. The decent 3D and dance action barely rescues it.
After being humiliated at a street dance competition by the dance troupe Invincible, Manu (Tom Conti) teams up with Eddie (George Sampson) to find the best street dancers in Europe. They assemble a motley group of free style dancers and one Latino dancer but it will take more than an assembly to win a dance competition.
This is a film so sloppily written that it relies only on the dance and decent music to take it forward. Hence it is a shame that instead of going full blast on the dance numbers by having them occupy sufficient time, this one acts parsimoniously by merely sprinkling a few dance numbers here and there.
Thus it is a huge letdown compared to most of the dance films of recent times, including its predecessor. It is as if they were in a hurry to wrap up the film instead of ending it with a whammy.
Even the end dance sequence does not awe. Neither has it been choreographed well, nor shot in accordance to the dance. It has not even been given sufficient screen time leaving a fan wanting for more.
Like the direction, the acting is just barely short of being terrible.
Yes, there are some awe-inspiring dance moves in the film, but they are far between and fragmentary. Cut those out and you have a shell of the film 'Step Up'. Go watch 'Step Up' instead. It had good dance, good music, good story and decent acting.