Adam Sevani, Alyson Stoner, Rick Malambri, Sharni Vinson, Keith "Remedy" Stallworth, Kendra Andrews, Stephen "tWitch" Boss, Joe Slaughter
Jon M. Chu
Amy Andelson, Emily Meyer
Mostly musical, quite a bit
If you found yourself toe tappin' or otherwise inspired by the first two Step Up films then, by all means, kill yourself.
Okay. Okay. Just kidding.
Actually, if you do fancy yourself a fan of the first two films then, by all means, Step Up 3D should be on your schedule for this weekend, a paint-by-numbers variation of the first two films with slightly worse acting, an infinitely worse storyline yet the best dance sequences of the three films and surprisingly effective 3D sequences to boot.
This is not to suggest that Step Up 3D is actually worth 3D prices. Heck, it's not even worth 2D prices, but cinema is a stunningly individualized method of entertainment and if the first two films in this series entertained you then there's truly no reason whatsoever that Step Up 3D won't do the exact same thing.
If you are able to surrender yourself to the film's infectious dancing and spirit, then there's a strong likelihood that you'll find yourself leaving the theatre after the closing credits have rolled feeling energized, a touch inspired and even smiling. These feelings may not endure much beyond a few hours, but in terms of vacuous entertainment you can't do much better than Step Up 3D.
While it would be easy to assume that Step Up 3D is simply the latest Hollywood spectacle to be post-fitted for 3D technology, to assume so would be incorrect and, in fact, the film has the look and feel of a film that was truly made to take full advantage of 3D.
Director Jon Chu moves the action from the scene of the first two films, Baltimore, over to the brighter lights of New York City. Moose (Adam Sevani), a supporting player in the last film, is the headliner here along with his galpal Camille (Alyson Stoner), as the two head off for NYU, which is featured prominently throughout the film.
To describe the plot of Step Up 3D feels completely and utterly a waste of time. Step Up 3D is essentially a Broadway musical filmed in 3D with marvelous dancing, tremendous special effects, melodramatic acting and a storyline that constantly intertwines music with dance with melodrama.
In case you're wondering, yes there is another dance-off and yes good is pitted against evil once again.
I'll give you one guess as to who wins.
Plot, storyline and character development weren't the key points in the first two Step Up films and they're even less the center of attention here. Step Up 3D is almost solely about dancing and inspiration and, for the most part, the film succeeds in these areas though not quite to the point that this critic can justify an actual recommendation.
Step Up 3D features a killer soundtrack including the likes of Jay-Z and T-Pain along with others, while the camera work of Ken Seng blends nicely with the film's advanced technology to create dance sequences that make the old high school dance in Footloose look like a kiddie romp.
If you've avoided the first two Step Up films, then there's no reason whatsoever to force yourself into the theatre to catch this latest entry. Sure to please already existing fans, there's nothing in Step Up 3D to bring new fans into the fold.
Step Up 4 Play?
© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic