I don’t know how to justify the reasons behind watching this because there wasn’t any and thats probably why its taken me so long to put this post together.
Before the short reviews, bear with me for a second when I explain when and how I came to do this, because it was completely spontaneous. Picture this, its New Year’s Eve morning. I have my best friend and her boyfriend coming over for dinner and I have to whip up a chicken (which is marinating in the fridge) and a beef stew. That means about 3 hours in advance of preparation. Maybe you cook more efficiently than I do, but I’m a baker, NOT a cook. I opened up my Chromecast in the kitchen/dining room area and started flipping through the movies. Bring it On was on My List and I thought: cheerleading movie doesn’t need a lot of focus. So I sat down and turned it on. When it ended, I saw recommendations for 3 other Bring it On flicks. Thats when I was like: Wait? 3 more? I thought there was only like 2 sequels..MAX! But when I did the search, Netflix had all FIVE! Granted, I don’t follow this franchise, but it was fit for a whole late morning to evening marathon and I could do chores, food preparation and cook with tons of background noise/music.
Here we go!
BRING IT ON (2000)
Director: Peyton Reed
Cast: Kirsten Dunst, Eliza Dushku, Gabrielle Union, Jesse Bradford
A champion high school cheerleading squad discovers its previous captain stole all their best routines from an inner-city school and must scramble to compete at this year’s championships.-IMDB
The first one to start this entire franchise off definitely has to have some magic. Mind you, you need to treat these movies exactly how you would treat the Step Up franchise, except I personally think that one is a lot more enjoyable. Bring it On starts with a much stronger cast (before they got popular) and the story and chemistry are much better. Lead by Kirsten Dunst and Eliza Dushku, the language is possibly a little dated and the cheerleading aspect is the strongest here: the pride of it all and the actual competition is on a national level. Its generally a fun and relatively entertaining watch. I wouldn’t mind watching it once in a while.
BRING IT ON AGAIN (Video 2004)
Director: Damon Santostefano
Cast: Anne Judson-Yager, Bree Turner, Kevin Cooney, Faune A. Chambers, Bryce Johnson, Richard Lee Jackson, Bethany Joy Lenz
When new students can’t get onto their college cheerleading team, they form their own squad and prepare for a cheer off. – IMDB
Poster slogan is wrong because its not higher stakes. Bring it On never really goes on a national level competition like the first one. This is an inter-college affair where they are fighting with the all-star team here to see who the dean deems better to go to the nationals. So yes, lesser stakes. Plus, this had one of the most unappealing main characters. I didn’t want to watch her at all. The squad they do put together is kind of funny so it made it a little more entertaining. Still, this one is probably the most meh one in the Bring It On movies.
With that said, it makes me wonder why I continued but you know, the next one has someone who has been in magazines (when I ordered them a lot) so I guess I wondered how her acting was.
Lets move along…
BRING IT ON: ALL OR NOTHING (VIDEO 2006)
Director: Steve Rash
Cast: Hayden Panettiere, Solange Knowles, Gus Carr, Emme Rylan, Cindy Chiu, Giovonnie Samuels
A transfer student to a rough high school tries joining the cheer-leading squad and she not only faces off against the head cheerleader, but against her former school in preparation for a cheer-off competition. – IMDB
That person I’m talking about is Hayden Panettiere who is the main lead in this one. Pretty much, her dad loses her job so she goes to the booneyville for school and ends up joining that squad which goes against her old squad. But a confession, I was looking at her IMDB and realized, I had seen her in I Love You, Beth Cooper but then, I don’t remember much of that movie. Either way, back to this one. Its probably the least memorable. It had Rihanna guest starring as the final judge. This time, the stakes are winning a dance competition judged by Rihanna at the final stage to win computers for their school. The final battle scene was pretty good but other than that, I had to flip through this one again to remember its existence and where it belonged in this franchise. Nope, not very good. I guess the good part is that they pay tribute to the original quite a few times and those were laugh out loud moments
The franchise is going down in a rapid pace, my friends.
But still, I continue…
BRING IT ON: IN IT TO WIN IT (VIDEO 2007)
Director: Steve Rash
Cast: Ashley Benson, Cassie Scerbo, Noel Areizaga, Jennifer Tisdale, Michael Copon, Lisa Glaze, Adam Vernier
Set in Southern California cheer camp, the captain of West High Sharks Carson is ready to win the cheer camp championships against East Coast Jets, their ultimate rivals. Thats before Carson realizes that the guy she met before camp and started liking Penn was actually a cheerleader in the Jets. While the opposing team Jets captain, Brooke tries to use that in her advantage, they decide to go on a one on one cheer-off and gets caught and part of the team is injured. Now, the only way to go to the championships is to join forces into a stronger and better team if they can find a way to work together.
Right off, this is a little Romeo and Juliet type of story set in a cheerleading scenario. Except its a lot more silly and light-hearted. Ever since I’ve started
watching obsessing over Pretty Little Liars, my favorite character is Hannah played by Ashley Benson so I was pretty happy to see her in this. This isn’t a masterpiece of cinema but she made it a lot more fun to watch. Plus, there was a lot cheer stuff going on and the story was predictable as always BUT every Bring It On movie has a breakthrough move that lifts them into their winning number, this one does THE BEST ONE! Maybe its because I’m a cable-less and satellite-free Canadian so this cheerleading competition thing is really foreign to me but I loved this cheer number a lot. This one was just a lot of fun to watch. Nothing serious or trying to be, it knew exactly what it was and delivered on it. That makes me happy 🙂
With a way better mood, I move on to the last movie…
BRING IT ON: FIGHT TO THE FINISH (VIDEO 2009)
Director: Billie Woodruff
Cast: Christina Milian, Vanessa Born, Cody Longo, Gabrielle Dennis, Rachele Smith
When her widowed mother remarries her rich man, East LA cheerleading captain must relocate to a new high school in West Los Angeles high school. There she comes against the all star cheerleading team Avery. At first reluctant, she joins and becomes captain of the unpopular school cheerleading squad, Sea Lions and with the help of her stepsister, Skylar and shipping in her best friends from East LA, they go against Avery’s squad.
This final Bring It On adds a Latin flair to it. Although sometimes it does go a little over the top, this does switch it up a little. Its nothing special but there is some extremely silly funny moments to be had. Its a little eye-rolling at times but still, at this point, I’m just waiting for this to finish because thats about all the cheerleading I can manage to watch. Am I saying this is bad? Not really, the final routine and getting it all together was actually pretty fun. Plus, they switched it up at the end and instead of dance, they put in a little singing number. I guess thats how everyone started out? I don’t really know and I’m not sure I actually care enough to search it up.
Bring It On marathon done and marked off! I’m pretty happy that I got this over with. Its not really my type of movie. I like dance movies and what not but something about cheerleading doesn’t really have the originality that dance has. To make it fair, while I was doing chores and cooking while I was playing this in the background the first time on New Year’s Eve, I did come back and took a few days to rewatch them. Who knows, maybe I missed something in the not so good ones. If you do like this sort of thing, the original definitely is the best one to go for with a decent cast and a good chemistry. Both Kirsten Dunst and Eliza Dushku has moved on to better things like Upside Down and Dollhouse respectively. Aside from that one, I’d watch the 4th one again and maybe the 5th but the second and the third was pretty bad.
Have you seen Bring it On?