Step Up Revolution (2012) Review
Review by Film.com
For whatever reason, the Baltimore-set “Dirty Dancing” knock-off “Step Up” broke out in 2006, and every effort has been made to continue the franchise in star Channing Tatum’s absence. 2008’s “Step Up 2 The Streets” and 2010’s “Step Up 3-D” skewed closer to territory already well-mined by the likes of “Stomp the Yard” and “Breakin’,” always uniting two generically attractive dancers from different sides of the tracks just in time for second-act contrivance, betrayal, breathless apologies and big old dance battles.
Now we find ourselves transplanted to Miami for the otherwise identical “Step Up Revolution,” in which a flash mob (known simply as “The Mob”) has been pulling off elaborate dance stunts in public view for the sake of earning a $100,000 prize on YouTube. The stakes are raised once real estate magnate Bill Anderson (Peter Gallagher, phoning it in) comes to South Beach with daughter Emily (Kathryn McCormick) in tow. She’s a classical dancer with an elite company in her sights, despite Daddy’s assurances that her dream is hopeless.
Review by Washington Post
Despite its title, audiences shouldn’t expect anything revolutionary from the fourth chapter in the “Step Up” franchise. “Step Up: Familiar Ground” or “Step Up: You’ve Seen All This Before” would be more accurate, but Summit Entertainment’s marketing department knows that wouldn’t help sell tickets.
By proudly waving its dance-to-live flag, “Step Up” actually falls in lockstep with a proud lineage of body-rocking dramas. The toned specimens bending and kicking through “Revolution” love talking about “breaking the rules” when it comes to their attention-grabbing choreography. At the same time, the film desperately clings to exactly the same rigid, rage-against-the-machine screenwriting tropes that defined its various predecessors. The four “Step Up” films couldn’t exist without “You Got Served,” “Dirty Dancing,” “Footloose” (the original and its remake), “Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo,” “Flashdance,” “Saturday Night Fever” and, yes, even “West Side Story.”
Review by The Globe and Mail
Dance gets political in Step Up Revolution, the fourth installation of the popular movie franchise, which delivers plenty of spectacular fancy footwork in what is otherwise a flat-footed fantasy. Like its Step Up forerunners, Revolution adheres to the classic “boy from one side of the tracks meets girl from the other side” plot but takes a commendable – though not revolutionary – leap by trying to offer something more thoughtful than the overused crew-versus-crew competition scenario as the dance theme. While there are some good ideas in the story, the non-dance scenes overall are weakly executed, ridden with dialogue clichés, absent of spark or tension and featuring mostly lacklustre acting; there is no Channing Tatum (star of the original Step Up) to be discovered here.