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Review: Step Up 4: Miami Heat (Revolution)


With the financial success of the three previous Step Up features, it is no surprise that the fourth entry is currently hitting our cinema screens. Step Up 4: Miami Heat (or Revolution to those outside the UK) sees the high octane dancing transported to the Florida city with a new cast of fresh faced young dancers.

Miami Heat follows a team of cutting-edge flash mob (known as The MOB) dancers attempting to win an online contest, which requires them to reach 10 million Youtube views. These plans are sidetracked upon the arrival of a wealthy businessman, Bill Anderson who plans to demolishing many of the city's homes and businesses. However, The MOB find support in the unlikeliest of places - from Anderson's dancer daughter, Emily.

One surely knows what to expect when going to see a modern dance film - slick choreography, vibrant direction and pulsating dance music. On this level, Miami Heat truly delivers, it is infectious, colorful and undeniably draws you in with its party-like atmosphere. Director, Scott Speer captures the beauty and energy of Miami, whilst also reflecting the intricacy and skill of the dance crews involved. The dance routines are choreographed with precision and staged in a variety of original and unexpected locations from high end art galleries to coastal shipping docks.

The formula may be near identical to the previous films in the series, but there is no denying that it has it's fans. One thing that should be admired is that the franchise does continually 'step up' with each entry - becoming bigger and more spectacular. Despite growing in scale with each entry, the narrative quality continues to decrease with Miami Heat mainly consisting of dance set pieces held together by an uninspired 'save the city' plot.

Whilst showing a clear skill and talent in their dancing ability, leads Ryan Guzman and Kathryn McCormick's dramatic range leaves much to be desired with the characters sometimes appearing smug and two-dimensional. However, considering that Miami Heat is their debut feature, the pair do show strong potential. Peter Gallagher also appears occasionally to remind us that he is now the go-to-guy for the archetypal bad guy role in teen movies.

Step Up 4: Miami Heat delivers well-crafted, vibrant set pieces and choreography, however the lack of originality in the film's formula may prove tiresome for most.

Rating: 2.5/5

Is Step Up 4 a step too far? Let us know below.
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