With this weekend's release of Step Up All In, the long-running dance movie franchise achieves the rarified milestone of a FIFTH theatrically released installment. Typically that franchise needs to have visceral thrills of which an audience will never tire, things like car chases (The Fast and the Furious), exploding viscera (Final Destination, Saw, Resident Evil, A Nightmare on Elm Street), laserbeams (Star Trek), or small black women shouting into bullhorns (Police Academy).
In an industry where sequels are the rule it's still surprisingly rare for a film franchise to make it to number 5.
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Its plot still involves a fish-out-of-water brunette and culminates in a triumphant dance competition, but 3D is most notable for its ostensible merger with America's great dance franchise So You Think You Can Dance. ), Step Up 3D feels like nothing so much as a party.
Produced by Adam Shankman and featuring more than a few familiar faces from the Fox competition series (t Witch! And where the actual 3D element might at first glance seem like a crass novelty tie-in that will surely date it, the gimmick is actually used to stunning effect.Step Up 3D marks the first time this franchise realized what it really wanted to be and stripped away everything it didn't. Briana Evigan is an American actress best known for her role as Andie from the film, "Step Up 2: The Streets." She has also earned a reputation as a "scream queen" for starring in numerous horror films such as "Sorority Row," "Mother's Day," and "The Devil's Carnival." Read More Briana Barbara-Jane Evigan was born on October 23, 1986 in Los Angeles, California.But when the principal (a hilariously bored-looking Rachel Griffiths) agrees to let him do janitorial work to make amends, he meets the stiff, overachieving dancer Nora (Jenna Dewan, Tatum's future wife).From there the plot unfolds in a pretty expected way, with both Tyler and Nora inspiring each other to dance in new and more sensual ways.Don't let the comparatively unimaginative title fool you: Step Up 3D is VERY wonderful and inspired.Conceptually it's a fairly large departure from what had come before, but it also very much set the formula for what would follow. Chu's 2010 film introduced us to two new leads in Natalie (Sharni Vinson) and Luke (Rick Malambri), whose lives revolve around an only-in-the-movies secret urban dance commune complete with artfully graffiti'd loft and a sneaker wall.And yes, the dancers must raise money to save the dance commune from evil developers.The New York-set Step Up 3D is not only the first of the films to depart Baltimore, it also eschews the high school element entirely (holdover character Moose now attends NYU).We can now add to this list 'hunks doing body-rolls' because with Step Up All In, everybody's favorite dance-movie franchise has finally unlocked this rarified achievement: a FIFTH theatrically released film! Like the Friday the 13th franchise before it, the first movie in the Step Up franchise is the outlier of the series in that both films' signature features weren't actually present yet (which, in the case of Friday, was Jason Voorhees, and in the case of Step Up was ACTUAL FUN).But for those who weren't already familiar with this very important series it can be hard to keep straight how all five seemingly stand-alone movies actually relate to one another (they do! That's because Anne Fletcher's 2006 dance drama was more concerned with a wrong-side-of-the-tracks romance than exciting set-pieces.