All movie fans have their guilty secrets and I make no apology for the admission that the Step Up franchise is mine.
PLOT: Sean (Ryan Guzman) is the leader of The Mob, a dance crew who video their public dance routines in an attempt to win a youtube competition and get some of that internet money. Sean meets and instantly falls in love with Emily (Kathryn McCormick) the daughter of Mr Anderson (Peter Gallagher) a businessman who plans to bulldoze his neighbourhood. END PLOT
The plot is paper thin but it is on par with the previous Step Up films - take that how you wish. The Mob saves the neighbourhood by reducing Mr Anderson to tears through the medium of urban dance and everything is wrapped up nicely in a 99min bundle.
The Mob is made up of complete unknowns. Guzman and McCormick are not terrible but their saving grace is that they both can dance. I say they are unknowns as I did not recognise any of the cast - there may be a hidden singer in there but I lack the inclination to check IMDB.
It is a sad state of affairs when you know enough about the franchise to recognise cameo appearances from minor characters in previous films.
The strength of the Step Up franchise lies in its dance set pieces and Step Up 4: Miami Heat did not disappoint. After a noisy street dance, The Mob thereafter invaded an art museum and a restaurant before the grand finale. It was all very impressive and stylish.
I don’t watch MTV and I refuse to watch music videos as they bore me to tears so perhaps I was naive to be shocked that a film set in Miami featured a dance section with scantily clad dancers on a beach. The only reason it bothered me is because I had kids with me and because of that I was very aware of what we were watching. They don’t know it but in the opening ten minutes we were one bikini bottomed crotch thrust away from walking out.
The music was a mixture dance and RnB songs none of which I had heard before nor am I likely to hear again. The soundtrack worked for the film and the music and dance gelled very well but I won’t be adding any songs to my i-pod.
Step Up 4: Miami Heat will not be to everyone’s taste but I have such a soft spot for films with dance/music in them so I was always going to enjoy it. It isn’t as good as the original which starred (the suddenly popular) Channing Tatum but it is a much stronger offering than Step Up 3D.
Overall the set pieces themselves are what I paid for and the film delivered. Step Up 4: Miami Heat is a hard one to rate as the dance sequences were excellent but when the cast were required to act the script and performance flaws were hard to ignore. It gets a 7.5/10 but the dance routines have skewed the grade.
Step Up 4: Miami Heat has been viewed and enjoyed but it is out of my system now……until Step Up 5.