Monday, July 17, 2017

Trash Bin: STEP UP

Welcome to another installment of the TRASH BIN, where we watch the worst movies Hollywood has to offer, according to the critics, and give you our thoughts, good or bad. This week's pick is the dance drama STEP UP from 2006, starring Jenna Dewan and Channing Tatum as two talented dancers with different artistic styles.

The key to any dance film worth its salt is great dancing and choreography, and this film has just that. Also, the chemistry between the two main actors Dewan and Tatum is extremely magnetic. The chemistry was great off screen as well, as the pair got married in 2009. I think it's sweet when actors fall in love on and off screen. Another great thing about this movie is that it takes places in Baltimore, MD, about two hours from where I grew up.

Step Up tells the story of two young people from different social backgrounds. Nora (Dewan) was born into privilege and dreams of becoming a professional dancer. Tyler (Tatum) is a talented hip-hop dancer with a troubled past. The two end up as dance partners and blow away the competition.

This film reminded me of  SAVE THE LAST DANCE from 2001 because its two main characters also came from different social backgrounds and ended up falling in love. I enjoyed both films and they both brought authenticity to the art of dancing in film.  When you think of dance films, these are the two the always come up in conversation, and for good reason.

One of my favorite scenes is when Tyler peers into one of Nora's dance classes. He's working there as a janitor. I like this scene because this is where Nora and Tyler first meet. Then, when two of Tyler's friends come to visit him at the school, he shows off his dancing skills, and unbeknownst to Tyler, Nora's curiously watching him from a window.

This is a great film because both of the main characters have obstacles to overcome to get what they want out of life. It would be pretty boring to watch a film where everything goes right for the characters. That would put me to sleep.

I thought this film had a great plot and choreography. However, the critics did not agree with me. Step Up received only a 19% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes with very mixed reviews. Jeannette Catsoulis of THE NEW YORK TIMES said that "STEP UP was a likable product that's refreshingly free of vulgarity".

I'm surprised that it only received a 19% on Rotten Tomatoes. However, both Dewan and Tatum have moved on to bigger and better things. If you are a fan of dance movies and/or Channing Tatum, then this film is for you.


Rotten Tomatoes: 19%
Metacritic: 48
IMDb: 6.5/10


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