Posted by: Dr P | May 30, 2010

StreetDance 3D

Inspirational! Edgy! Filled with fire and gritty urban slang! Just some of the feedback I’ve received about these reviews of late. This one’s going to be a teensy bit biased, however, as there’s nothing I love more than streetdance. As the recently monikered “Captain Camp” (cheers, Pete), my own dance moves consist less of “popping and locking” (there’s plenty more of that sort of lingo here) and more swaying and YMCAing. But that doesn’t mean I haven’t gathered a deep appreciation for the street scene. Yes indeed.

The first time I saw a trailer for this movie I almost popped one out right there and then. Big G had to restrain me in my seat as I recall. Just look at the role call! George Sampson. Flawless! and of course … Diversity. Street kings, icons, cutting edge dance troupe bar none. And possibly the only street dance outfit to feature a Banjo. Not only that … 3D! Yes indeed.

Unfortunately my love for the medium is not shared by Big G and so I attended the screening on my own – well, not quite, for the cinema was packed with other fans, and boy did we have fun whooping and hollering (though in my case, with a very bad throat, it was more wheezing and gasping) at the antics on display – and that was just the trailer for Step Up 3 (oh yes). Thus whipped into a frenzy of anticipation, the lights dimmed, the credits rolled and off we go …

Streetdance features the continuing exploits of Carly (Nichola Burley) and her crew as they have just weeks to prepare to battle for the UK Streetdance crown. Unfortunately they’ve lost a key member, Carly’s dubious ex Jay, and have nowhere to rehearse. Imagine our surprise then when in the process of delivering sandwiches to a ballet school, Carly crosses paths with schoolmistress Helena (Charlotte Rampling – yes, really); the school ma’am sees a fire and passion in the street world and wants Carly to teach it to her emotionally-stilted ballet dancers, who themselves are preparing to audition for the Royal Ballet. The condition is … free rehearsal space in exchange for 5 ballet dancers joining Carly’s crew.

And that’s basically it. The remainder of the film plays on the counterpoint of the 2 dance styles and the blossoming relationships between them on and off the dancefloor. We learn quickly just how badass the street dancers are when they, wait for it, engage in a food fight in the ballet cafeteria. The acting is unbelievably awful, the storyline sucks, and Carly, the tough Northern girl, is about as ferocious as a whippet with a limp.

But who cares? The dance scenes KICK ASS. Flawless, BGT’s 2nd best dance crew are pitted as the reigning champs and a proper “in your face” urban outfit, and they pull off some top routines. Diversity, sadly, only get a brief cameo – though to be fair they’d blow everyone else off screen so it’s probably a good thing. George Sampson plays a geeky sidekick of the crew who comes good when it matters (extremely predictable but fun to watch), and of course the ballet folk suddenly become masters of the art in no time.

Our heroes are cracking to watch, with Carly and her assortment of crop tops in particular well worth her screen time. And you’ve never ever seen a cheese sandwich delivered with such attitude. Charlotte Rampling manages to play it straight as the school mistress, even though she was probably dying inside at some of the dialogue, and there are some neat cameos from other well known “urban artistes”.

Yes it’s camp, yes it’s cheesy, yes it has more holes than a bucket of Swiss cheese, and yes it’s completely ridiculous, but it’s getting 5 stars from me cos it’s just the funnest, most feelgood film you’re likely to see! Streetdance RULES!

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