Step Up All In (2014)

The goal this year is to try to review everything I watched.  I did a fantastic job of that in the first two years of blogging and eventually it kind of fell apart as the versatility grew.  However, this year, I’m trying to step up  my game (no pun intended). The other night, I was sitting by myself after a long day of shovelling and cleaning and all that fun stuff winter and the holidays brings and I decided to relax so I pulled out Step Up: All In and gave it a go.  For the record, if you are new here, I’ve reviewed all the previous Step Ups already. I really enjoy them even though I very much know that they are not strong in their stories but the dance routines and the music are always what I go to this for, and well, Adam Sevani’s character.

Let’s not get ahead of ourselves and check out the synopsis first! 😉

Step Up All In (2014)

step up all in

Director: Trish Sie

Cast: Ryan Guzman, Briana Evigan, Adam G. Sevani, Misha Gabriel Hamilton, Stephen Boss, Stephen Stevo Jones, David Schriebman, Mari Koda, Alyson Stoner, Isabella Miko

All-stars from the previous Step Up installments come together in glittering Las Vegas, battling for a victory that could define their dreams and their careers.-IMDB

 After the first Step Up with a decent storyline, the rest of the Step Up movies are very much about the dance, choreography and upbeat music that keeps it going.  Most of the times, the story is just extras to give it a little story in the background even if its very much predictable and cliche in every way. However, I don’t mind it at all.  The point is, I went in and came out with a skip to my step and started dancing and moving during the movie and being mesmerized by the energy of the dance and the originality of the choreography.  The dance talent on screen is really awesome.  Step Up Revolution was all about the dancing and Step Up 2 The Streets was all about finding the courage to embrace your talent and this is where the main guy, Sean (Ryan Guzman) and Andie (Briana Evigan) respectively come together.  The best part is that between these two coming together and of course, falling for each other in the process, Adam Sevani playing one of my favorite characters Moose gets a much bigger role. Except, its about how dance is hard to be a profession and it doesn’t matter how hard it is to reach your dream and how impossible it seems, you just have to remember that its what you love and not make it into something that you dread, in a way.  The message is there, as it is for every other Step Up movie: follow your dreams proudly and live out your passion no matter how hard it is.  Its because of this message that I love these Step Up movies also.

Step Up All In

Honestly, Step Up All In is the first movie that does feel a little empty.  It tries to focus more on a plot and giving us the story of Moose and Camille while building on Sean forgetting why he danced in the first place and his relationship with Andie making him see the light and not turn into a jerk who forgot where he came from. Fact is, the story could have been simplified much more and kept to the normal formula.  I applaud the effort of trying to get something more in there but you know what it sacrificed? The amazing dance choreography that the previous installments had. In the first 30 minutes of the movie, I actually started feeling a little sad that they had taken this path because the dancing was really bad and the music was lackluster.  However, once the group does get together and it heads into their training phase, it really picks up much more and the dance portion becomes much better and very engaging to watch.  They still try hard to put that story in there but the chemistry between the dancers, especially Sean and Andie start to shine.

Step Up All In

I think its time to dive a little into the cast. I’m not a huge fan of Step Up 2 so I have my reservations for Briana Evigan however, it has nothing to do with her dancing abilities.  I actually kind of really liked the dancing and even acting and whatever chemistry they had between Andie and Sean.  Moose and Camille (Alyson Stoner) are really great as well. They give it a lot of drama and its okay because I do like their characters even if its unnecessary.  I can get pass even that forced plot but my main issue was the stupid leader of the Grim Knights and the host of the dance competition Alexxa Brava (Isabella Miko). The latter wins it for parts that I wanted to fast forward because it is just over the top ridiculous.  And some of you know how much over the top ridiculous I can handle. She was just plain annoying when it could have been entertaining.

Step Up All In

Overall, Step Up All In adds in too much unnecessary plot to try to make this dance series into something more, in turn causing it to lose what I truly love it for. However, it is only the first little bit that has that issue and when the group LMNTRIX crew gets together, the chemistry and dance choreography take a turn for a very positive path uphill and turns into a rather engaging Step Up movie.  Its still very much a dance movie that is really nothing special but bringing back familiar characters from the previous installments and keeping the emphasis of following your dreams and passions is one that I truly love, appreciate and find rather inspiring. Although, unless you do love this franchise, I don’t think you will like this one a lot, in fact, you might as well go back to watch some of the earlier ones.

Have you seen Step Up All In? Are you fan of the Step Up franchise? Which is your favorite?

Step Up Revolution (2012)

Its been 2 months or so since my review on the previous installment of the Step Up series and after my Toronto trip, I was able to pick up Step Up Revolution for a decent price.  If you have missed it, I did reviews this year on the previous few also, Step Up, Step Up 2, and Step Up 3D HERE, HERE and HERE.  If its anything I know about these movies, its just my time to shut off my brain and enjoy.  Exactly what I need after a long drive…

step up revolution posterDirector: Scott Speer

Cast: Ryan Guzman, Kathryn McCormick, Misha Gabriel, Cleopatra Coleman, Stephan Boss, Peter Gallagher

Sean (Ryan Guzman) and Eddy (Misha Gabriel) lead the crew The Mob that focuses on making big performance flash mobs in all areas of Miami.  This is all in the goal to reach a certain amount of hits on Youtube to earn the grand prize in order to further The Mob’s presence.  As a job and source of revenue, them and a part of their crew work at a big hotel chain. Its there that Sean meets Emily (Kathryn McCormick), the daughter of the owner of the hotel chain, who wishes to pursue her career as a professional dancer against her father’s wishes.  As a stimulation to have better ideas, she joins The Mob hiding her identity as another situation grows that her father (Peter Gallagher) wants to tear down The Mob’s area in Miami to build a upscale hotel resort.

step up 4 dance

Step Up Revolution is high energy and filled with new and original dance routines.  Thats possibly the most attractive part of this movie.  I didn’t enjoy it as much as the predecessors but its still enjoyable.  Although the plot for these are usual simple, this one really doesn’t dive any further than the surface and its frequently intercepted with more and more dancing and training paired with music.  As you see from the picture above, the dance scenes look absolutely gorgeous and the choreography is fun to watch.

step up 4 couple

My issue with this one is really that I felt that the characters lacked some charisma.  For the previous few movies, I love all the characters and what they brought on screen.  Plus, the previous ones had obvious connections especially with the character of Moose, played by Adam Sevani.  In all honesty, the characters were somewhat boring when they weren’t dancing.  Which really helps that it was full of dance scenes, right? It was a good call on that level. Plus, to link it up, they kept one of the guys in the previous movies that joined The Mob and eventually got us the big showdown dance finale scene of “protest art” with a few of my fave dancers from the previous one. My favorite out of this series/franchise had to be Step Up 3D and I thought the dance crew The Pirates were the best in all the movies so it made me happy to see a little connection established.

step up 4 moose cameo

If you liked the Step Up movies, I’d definitely recommend this one.  The characters may not be quite as interesting but there is a lot of dance scenes to compensate.  Each dance scene is totally awesome.  I’m a huge fan of flash mobs mostly because I’ve never seen one and I just don’t think they exist in Montreal.  Its that exciting factor of how someone executes it and in this one, its really whether The Mob will get caught also. Plus, the final dance scene is the best one out of all of them.  This one certainly  keeps the high energy vibe going.

Whats your favorite Step Up movie? Have you seen them all (or any at all)?