Step Up

Bomb Rating: 

When the stiff, white woman feels a bit of ghetto in her, you know the movie has reached nirvana.

Some people dream about being the next "American Idol" or the next Tiger Woods or about growing up and becoming an astronaut. Me? I've always dreamed of being from the "wrong side of the tracks."

If you're from the "wrong side of the tracks" there's always a hot chick waiting for you on the right side of the tracks. Not only is Tyler Gage (Channing Tatum) from the wrong side of the tracks, he can dance. This means that when he crosses over to the right side of the tracks and falls for a hot dancer named Nora (Jenna Dewan), he's got it made, despite all the struggles that come with crossing over.

Those difficulties include alienating your "wrong side of the track" friends, who will become irate the second they learn you've spent any time on the right side of the tracks. In Tyler's case, his best friend is Mac (Damaine Radcliff). Together with Mac's little brother, Skinny (De'Shawn Washington), Mac and Tyler spend their time hustling pick-up basketball games and stealing cars for Omar (Heavy D). They make the mistake of breaking into a dance school where Tyler is caught and eventually forced to do his community service, which is where he meets Nora.

Nora loses her dance partner and eventually concludes that Tyler is the only option to help her practice for the big show. This is where we learn all the important differences between the wrong and right side of the tracks. For instance, on the right side you have the rule of law. On the wrong side, anything goes. On the right side, you have discipline. On the wrong side, you have a complete lack of structure. On the right side you have people who see everything through until the end and give it everything they've got. On the wrong side, you have quitters. However, where dancing is concerned, on the wrong side, you have feeling and passion. On the right side is too much form and process.

Thus, Tyler learns the rule of law, discipline, and how to see something through until the end, but teaches Nora how to dance with feeling and passion and helps her dance like she's never danced before. This is confirmed when we see the school director (Rachel Griffiths) sitting in the audience during the big show bobbing her head like a chick from the wrong side of the tracks. When the stiff, white woman feels a bit of ghetto in her, you know the movie has reached nirvana.

"Step Up" clearly steps in it.

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