Step Up 4: Miami Heat is this summer’s dance movie guilty pleasure. This time, Step Up 4 sees a bunch of wannabe dance stars, known as The Mob, set out to wow Youtube with a series of bold flash-mobs. But when wealthy businessman, Mr Anderson (Peter Gallagher), decides to bulldoze their community for a new development, performance art becomes protest art as The Mob try to reverse his plans. Meanwhile, Mr Anderson’s daughter, Emily (Kathryn McCormick), falls for leading flash-mob star Sean (Ryan Guzman) and joins The Mob declaring ‘how else are we supposed to stop my big, horrible, greedy father from destroying your beautiful neighbourhood?’. More realistic audience members will find this premise ridiculous, but such naive hopefulness is the lifeblood of the Step Up franchise.
Despite it’s silly, formulaic and cliche plot, Step Up 4 piles on the entertainment. There are heaps of fun, fresh dance numbers that are brimming with slick choreography. The flash-mob concept also gives rise to interesting dance locations including a modern art gallery and a fine dining restaurant. The flash mob productions are loaded with props from cars to paper money and the costumes are elaborate too. Blending popular tracks with lesser known ones, the soundtrack is bass filled and when the script gets tiring, the next performance is never far away.
As with previous offerings, Step Up 4: Miami Heat is unrealistically optimistic but it’s also good summer fun that street dance fans will love. Look past the dull characters and cheesy product placement for shameless musical fun.
VERDICT: ✪ ✪ ✪
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