A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this movie has some strong language. A brother tells his sister she is acting like a "ho" because she is out on a date. Characters deliver packages for a man who is apparently a drug dealer and there is always a strong sense of the pull of thug life. A child is shot and killed (off camera). The main characters are in general responsible, respectful, and devoted to their families. One female character is committed to education and plans to become a doctor.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Best friends Elgin (Marques Houston of IMX) and David (Omari Grandberry) are the neighborhood's top street-dancing "crew." They compete with other crews at a local warehouse presided over by the fatherly Mr. Rad (Steve Harvey). Trouble arrives when a crew from another part of town comes to Mr. Rad's place and out-dances them. And soon the friends are feuding because David likes Elgin's sister Liyah (Jennifer Nicole Freeman). David was with Liyah when he was supposed to help Elgin make a delivery for bad guy Emerald (Michael "Bear" Taliferro). Because Elgin was alone, he was badly beaten by thugs who stole Emerald's delivery package. Emerald expects Elgin to replace the money that was stolen. And as it happens, they learn there is a dance contest with a $50,000 prize and the chance to appear in a Lil Kim video.
Is it any good?
The dance numbers are good (if now always optimally filmed), with lots of shaking and fierce attitude, and the story doesn't get in the way of the dancing too much. Fans of hip-hop groups B2K and IMX will enjoy seeing those performers as well as a guest appearance by Lil Kim. eagan Good, as Liyah's wisecracking best friend, is as much fun as the best of the dance numbers.
This would be mindless but enjoyably cheesy cinema fluff if it did not cross the line into the category of the unforgivable by using the murder of a child as a plot contrivance. That is a complete violation of the core premise of a movie like this one, which is that if you will offer 90 minutes of your life, it will provide something reasonably entertaining. Other than that one jarringly misbegotten detour, the movie is exactly what you would expect from a Hollywood fantasy about a street dance competition.
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