Unlikely to do much for the more sophisticated hoofer, but fun and brash Friday night entertainment nonetheless.
Ever since the glory days of Fred and Ginger, the escapist allure of watching people dance on the silver screen has been, for many, one of cinema’s most primal of pleasures. Now it's also big business, with the first StreetDance film becoming a bona fine box office sensation.
Yet, where the plot of old-school classics like Top Hat were as flimsy as a daffodil, they did have a special flair and panache that are unfortunately lacking in many of their modern counterparts.
This surfeit of charm, however, is StreetDance 2's secret weapon. With youth culture and street dancing being at the centre of this story, the film as a whole has an edgier feel than its classical counterparts. This urban grittiness is softened by the settings, with most of the action taking place in a glossily rendered Paris, as opposed to grimy inner city London or the graffiti-daubed ghettos of New York.
Seeking revenge after suffering humiliation at the hands of a rival crew, street dancer Ash (Falk Hentschel) gathers a gang of disparate hot-footers from around the globe to take a shot at the ultimate high-stakes dance-off.
Filling in Charlotte Rampling’s role from the first StreetDance film is a game Tom Conti who plays old mentor called Manu and owns the club where the group practice. He also exercises a restraining influence, not just on the hyperactive teens, but the stylistic excesses of the film as a whole.
All said StreetDance 2 is fun and brash Friday night entertainment. Though unlikely to do much for the more sophisticated hoofer, it will undoubtedly appeal to the younger hotsteppers to which it is clearly aimed.
Strictly for the younger generation.
There are hidden charms a-plenty.
Style wins over street.