Who's In It: Rick Malambri, Adam G. Sevani, Sharni Vinson, Alyson Stoner
The Basics: That one twerpy kid from Step Up 2: The Streets goes to NYU and vows to swear off all that crazy dancing in favor of studying electrical engineering. Almost immediately he's drawn back into the world of aggressively angry dance battles thanks to this other guy, an annoying filmmaker running around with a video camera extracting dancing-is-my-life confessionals from everyone he meets. The filmmaker guy is also the leader of a giant squat/bouncy house full of Beat Street misfits. This place has its own boombox wall and apartment-sized shoe closet. So, in realism terms, it's practically a documentary.
What's The Deal: The first Step Up was a cheapo garbage heap of boring drama and cut-rate dancing. Then came Step Up 2: The Streets. In that one somebody in charge had the wisdom to blow off the plot in favor of insane dance sequences and not much else. It was great. No distractions. But now we're back to plotting. Worse, it's a heartwarming, meaningful, we're-all-a-big-family-of-dancers kind of Disney Channel plot. So if you're nine years old you'll really be into it. If you're somewhat older you'll be wondering why they suddenly decided to remake Rent as a children's film.
What You Get Instead Of The Wild 3D Dancing In Your Face You Were Hoping For: Everyone waves their arms around a lot. And if you see it in the right theater with the glasses there are also bubbles, balloons, Nikes and splattered Icees making happy shapes in the sky.
Worth It Anyway Because Of: The finale, which is great. Not only do they incorporate all the wrongest, most hilarious ideas about electrical engineering into their routine, they also break out tiny little four-year-old kids, lasers and Tron-suits that turn everyone on screen into human Lite-Brites. This part is absolutely worth checking out at the second-run theater's two-dollar matinee.
The Barely Credited Most Famous Person In the Film: Harry Shum Jr., who plays Mike Chang on Glee. Better yet, he shows up at the end when it finally gets kinda-sorta good.