The first official trailer for Step Up Revolution has come out, and I find myself beyond psyched. Tell us what you think!
It’s worth noting that my passion for the franchise transcended reason two years ago when Step Up 3D (2010) broke through the third dimension and provided spectacle the likes of which one could only dream of seeing in Avatar (oh, yeah, I went there). I also appreciate the film dumping the tired dance-school setting in favour of turning the protagonists into a choreographed super-hero squad protecting artistic ambition across the globe with their high-flying jetés and mesmerising lock-and-pops.
With Step Up Revolution, the fourth entry in the series, director Scott Speer seems to have taken the next logical step (hoho!) and turned the Pirates crew into literal freedom fighters sticking it to the one percent by way of performance art. I dig the concept, which, from the looks of it, lends itself to spectacular set pieces in unlikely environments, but the cliché of an evil real estate developer (Peter Gallagher) worries me a bit. The franchise isn’t known for its subtlety, and I wonder whether first-time screenwriter Amanda Brody can sidestep the dangerous potential for eat-the-rich platitudes.
More to the point, I’m hoping the corporate melodrama won’t get in the way of the dancing, which, to my relief, proves the sole focus of the trailer after that cute opening with the action blockbuster parody. We get a cornucopia of dance celebrities, including Twitch and Joshua Allen from So You Think You Can Dance as well as Chadd Smith from The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers. It all leads to the big reveal: Adam G. Sevani as Moose from the two previous films. Only in an Adam Shankman production would a cameo by this amazing scrawny, little guy serve as the money shot.
On a related note, Hollywood culture has often forced dance movies to promote lesser athletes because of their looks and acting chops. The first Step Up (2006), for example, starred Jenna Dewan and Channing Tatum (okay, maybe “screen presence” is a more accurate attribute). Since then, the series has gradually shifted the pendulum toward boogie-down abilities. Kathryn McCormick, who seems to play the main love interest here, may not have much experience as a thespian, but she sure can bust a move. In fact, I still contend she got robbed in season six of So You Think You Can Dance. You get my meaning, right? If you don’t, why are you reading my ramblings on the trailer for Step Up Revolution?