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Friday
May222009

Dance Flick

Here's a movie that can't even get its title correct. While it does spoof a few dance movies like Step Up, it also rips on movies like High School Musical and Hairspray. Sorry, those are musicals. Just because there's dancing in them doesn't make them dance movies. Are movies with no laughs dramas? If so, then Dance Flick should be filed as far away from the comedy section as possible once this disaster hits DVD shelves.

When I write reviews, I usually like to do a quick rundown of the plot right about now. Here it is. White girl meets black guy, learns how to dance "street," and earns respect. In other words, who cares? It's a spoof movie. The plot is irrelevant.

Like many recent spoof films, Dance Flick's source material comes from movies that don't follow what the title implies. On top of the ones already mentioned, it lampoons Ray, Little Miss Sunshine, Superbad, Black Snake Moan, Twilight and more. Also like many recent spoof movies, all it consists of is gag after gag with little regard to continuity or narrative and are inconsequential to the overall plot. After the Black Snake Moan reference, the movie transitions through a fade to another place and time. Why did it do this? Because the reference was so awkward and unneeded that they had nowhere to go. The simple solution was to just end it.

The problem here is that the jokes are in bad taste, offensive at every possible opportunity. It randomly and unnecessarily makes fun of Ray Charles' blindness and tries to create humor in suicide, blackface, child abuse and more. Why not throw a rape joke in there while you're at it?

The jokes that aren't morally reprehensible are offensively unfunny, a fate just as bad when making a comedy. Dance Flick continually goes for the easy jokes, with punch lines that you'll see coming well before they land. At one point, Shawn Wayans' character goes to see his son. He's a neglectful father trying to make amends and when he shows up at the door, he says, "I'm here to pick up my son." So what does he do? He picks him and puts him back down. Hilarious.

The difference between the utter idiocy of this movie and the brilliance of one of the Wayans Brothers earlier spoof films, Scary Movie, is that horror is ripe for parody. Horror flicks, especially slashers, have a rigid formula that gives spoofers boundless resources for jokes. Dance films practically spoof themselves. I haven't sat through one dance movie and not laughed my ass off due to the sheer stupidity of their stories. So what this film does is merely recreate a scene from a dance movie, throw in a farting sound effect and pass it off as funny and creative. It's neither.

There was one mildy clever recurring idea here that made me smile. In all of those idiotic dance films, the only that matters to the characters is respect and Dance Flick is quick to take jabs at this foolish mindset, because we all know respect doesn't mean jack in the real world. You can have your respect. I'll take my college education.

Still, that isn't enough to salvage this debacle. While it's certainly not as bad as the Aaron Seltzer/Jason Friedberg atrocities (Meet the Spartans, Disaster Movie) that are hastily pumped out year after year , it's still a piece of crap, a celluloid abomination with little to no laughs. Dance Flick is much like the films that inspired it: shallow, arrogant and a complete waste of time.

Dance Flick receives 0.5/5

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