In the tradition of any number of stories where a boy from the wrong side of the tracks falls for a posh girl, Step Up
follows rebellious Tyler as he's forced to work with ballet dancer Nora to create a performance that could change both of their lives forever. Naturally, as young people thrown into these sorts of situations are wont to do, they fall madly and passionately in love, overcoming all their differences.
Aimed squarely at the teenage girl market, it's not a particularly new or interesting idea, and plays out in a fairly pedestrian way. But Step Up is calculated to appeal to a certain demographic--as evidenced by the soundtrack, which features the likes of Mario, Ciara, Kelis, Chris Brown, and Sean Paul--and in that respect, it succeeds masterfully.
The fact that the film's promoters chose to set up a MySpace profile instead of an official website, and that that MySpace profile has thousands of friends all posting adoring comments by teens who've watched the movie dozens of times, confirms this. Though Step Up may not be a great work of art, as a modern updating of a classic story, with hot young things in the lead roles and plenty of exciting dancing scenes, it thoroughly achieves what it set out to do. --Sarah Dobbs
Dance drama starring Channing Tatum as Tyler Gage, a rough street kid with raw talent. When Tyler finds himself doing community service at a school for the performing arts, he meets Nora (Jenna Dewan), a beautiful and privileged classically-trained dancer who's searching for a temporary replacement for her injured dance partner. Spying Tyler's smooth moves, Nora decides to take a chance on him. But as they begin training, tension builds, tempers flare and the differences in their backgrounds come to the fore. Will Tyler let these difficulties get in the way of his dreams?