I’m sure hostage negotiators and marriage counselors and “The Hague” are all doing perfectly adequate jobs with the resources they have. Whatever. But, guys, it’s 2010! Here’s some constructive criticism from me to you: MORE DANCE BATTLING. Peer-reviewed studies (see Step Up, Step Up 2: The Streets) have shown definitively that dance battling is the number-one most effective way to resolve conflicts through the medium of dance battling. Conflicts like when you accidentally scuff a rival crew’s kicks. Or when you need to prove to your uptight pops that hiphop dancing is as legit a career path as engineering. Or when you’re six months late on your payments to “the bank,” so they’re going to repossess your totally dope flophouse/dance studio that your dead parents built and sell it to your trust-funded arch nemesis/former best friend with a gambling problem. Dance battle is the only way.
I’m going to call it right now. Step Up 3D: best movie of the year. (Hush. Just go with it.) It has everything—dances, battles, dance battles, dance steps, dance moves, hiphop dancing, breakdancing, modern dancing, postmodern dancing, soap operatics, terrible dialogue, young people with really good bodies, wacky Argentinean twins, an uptight pops who just doesn’t understand, and one very wise African. It is super-duper absurd, and—I think—it knows it. People make solemn pronouncements like “You’re B-FAB: Born From a Boom Box” like that means something. They wax poetic about shoes (“If dance is our weapon, then this is our armor”). They do all of it WITH A STRAIGHT FACE. You know it’s set in New York City because that fucking Alicia Keys song never stops playing.
But you know what? Step Up 3D doesn’t have to be anything more than a series of completely magnificent dance sequences (all that tasty, candied melodrama is just a binding agent). And the dancing does not disappoint. It’s virtuosic and exciting and borderline magical and I am fucking serious. (Oh, but the 3D sucks.)
So should you see Step Up 3D? This is a difficult question. If it sounds like the stupidest fucking movie you’ve ever heard of, you are correct. If it sounds like the best fucking movie you’ve ever heard of, you are also correct. If you have the tiniest inkling that you might enjoy it (because, for example, you enjoy dialogue like “Welcome to MY house—the House of Pirates”), you should see it. If you are excited by flawlessly executed dance sequences, you should see it. If you think you have good taste in movies, you shouldn’t see it. But don’t fret. “The most important decisions in life are never easy.” I learned that from Step Up 3D. (Thanks, wise African!)