Step Up 4: Miami Heat
Director: Scott Speer
In the fourth installment of the Step Up franchise, we find ourselves in Miami (which means lots of bikinis and bleached hair). We meet Emily, the daughter of a wealthy property shark (Hollywood veteran Peter Gallagher), who falls for Ryan, a guy from the wrong side of the tracks. Shockingly, Ryan has also got a bit of thing for Emily, whose father is soon to bowl down a whole community to put up a strip mall. Budding romance aside, this is primarily a dance film with a backdrop of protest and demonstration against corporate greed and consumerism.
Emily joins a somewhat anarchical dance group called “The Mob” who stage large-scale stunts in public places. The Mob soon takes on a political agenda and their dances become political statements, voicing concerns similar to those of the Occupy movement. The romantic undertones leave a lot to be desired, and are a far cry from the starry-eyed chemistry of Channing Tatum and Jenna Dewan in the first film. However, the dancing is not lacking in sauciness, and at times borders on R-rated.
The movie isn’t heavy or emotionally draining, and what it lacks in dialogue and plot it certainly makes up for in dance numbers. It is rather obvious that the actors involved were picked for their dancing rather than their dramatic abilities. However, if you’re looking for a couple of hours of light entertainment with maximal dancing and minimal storyline, you will definitely enjoy this film. If you don’t like dance movies, it goes without saying that you should sit this one out.
4 / 5 stars