Last night we broke that annoying seal off of a brand spankin’ new copy of the movie Step Up. The night was downhill from there. I am usually forgiving of flaws, having produced a documentary myself. But this one was just not good. Most of these movies that you watch for the dance scenes and endure the parts in between (read Save the Last Dance, Take the Lead, Center Stage, Dirty Dancing Havana Nights, etc…) have mediocre to decent acting that carries you through the dialogue and makes the dance believable.

The problem with Step Up was that while the main roles were the normal mediocre, the crowd acting was horrible. For example: when the main character, a teenage guy who is living with dysfuncitonal foster parents, enters the performing arts school to begin his community service for vandalism, he passes three teenage girls singing in concert voices and two violinists passionately performing Pachabelle’s Cannon. Mind you this is all in a school’s HALLWAY. When did you see people performing in your school’s hallway like the homeless saxophonist you run into on a crowded downtown streetcorner begging for money. Later in the movie this same main character is attempting to vacuum an orchestra’s rehearsal room (a typical janitorial duty) when crowds of students walk past him to find their seats and begin rehearsing. It has been a while now since I found myself in school, but I don’t recall anyone trying to clean the room just before the beginning of class. Most janitors worked at the end of school when students were done for the day.

Blame it on the supporting crowd. Blame it on the director. I don’t know who is responsible, but the result was an un-believable dialogue with dance scenes that were “ok”. My suggestion: watch the dance scenes and fast forward through the rest of the movie.