It must be nice to live in a world where all your problems can be solved by simply dancing. Horribly cut-up that you may have ruined a blossoming romance? Dance the pain away. Can’t afford your ridiculous tour of Europe to assemble a team of stereotypical street dancers? Dance and the public will give you money. Tired of listening to a flatmate snore? Have a pillow fight and then dance. There is no aspect of human life and suffering that apparently can’t be solved by a quick one-step and the odd jumping roundhouse kick. This is the world we’re invited to be part of in StreetDance 2.
The story to StreetDance 2, as if anyone cares, sees a young dancer make a fool of himself in a dance competition before deciding to travel Europe (although how he affords it is anybody’s guess) assembling a team of super-friends to take on the undefeated champions of Street Dance and maybe just learn a little lesson in life, love and Street Dancing.
Having set out their stall in StreetDance, the film-makers of the originally titled StreetDance 2 follow the same basic principle. A band of loveable misfits, rendered completely devoid of actual characteristics beyond what you see on them physically, attempt to fuse two types of dance into one ‘super-dance.’ They do this in order to win a dance competition from a dastardly team of arrogant dancers called Invincible. The fact that the final dance-off seemingly takes place in the Colosseum even though they’re in Paris for the rest of the film is never explained. It’s not surprising though considering the rather irritating George Sampson explains from the outset that he is an “expert in speaking European.” Perhaps they were concerned that US audiences hadn’t heard of France.
The script (although it’s generous to call a napkin with the most cookie-cutter, cliched story an actual script) for StreetDance 2 is an abomination to the fine people who ply their trade as script-writers. The dialogue effectively establishes an odd conversational style that doesn’t exist anywhere in the world but StreetDance 2 and porn. As ripe as it is, it’s made all the worse for having untrained actors attempting to breathe life into their horribly stereotypical ‘characters.’ There’s the American lead actor, who brings new meaning to the phrase ‘a block of wood’ and the aforementioned George Sampson, who is just terrible. They occasionally wheel out Tom Conti who makes everyone else in the film look like a robot even with a smirk on his face that suggests that he might be in the film simply for the paycheck. It is lucky then that the female, Latin lead Eva (Sofia Boutella) is passable and will no doubt be catapulted to some form of stardom.
StreetDance 2 is everything you expect it to be. There is no originality outside of the dancing, which is spectacular at times. In fairness they sold the film on the strength of the dancing, which is flawless throughout, so in that respect they’ve succeeded. Sadly, when stacked up against every other film in existence, it is a pale imitation.