Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

"Step Up Revolution": Capitalism Triumphs Again 

Wednesday, Jul 25 2012

Hot on the heels of The Dark Knight Rises comes another ideologically incomprehensible — if rather more kinetic and shamelessly corny — manifestation of Occupy unrest-as-spectacle. The fourth installment of the Step Up franchise, Revolution lays its scene in economically divided Miami. Sean (Ryan Guzman), an allegedly low-born waiter at a posh hotel, spends his free time choreographing flash-mob numbers for his multimedia troupe, The Mob, working toward winning a YouTube contest, which inspires such howlers as "We gotta build on our momentum and generate more hits." En route, Sean meets Emily (Kathryn McCormick), an aspiring dancer and the daughter of the developer (Peter Gallagher) who wants to bulldoze Sean's neighborhood, news which galvanizes The Mob into activism. "It's not okay to make art fun anymore," says new Mob recruit Emily. "Enough with performance art — it's time for protest art." The production numbers, every bit as giddily improbable as the dialogue, include a bounding lowrider rodeo on South Beach's Ocean Drive, a chameleonic art gallery infiltration and, during The Mob's militant period, a conceptual corporate-drone number which incorporates raining dollars and the clear message "Not 4 Sale." That sentiment lasts exactly as long as it takes for Nike to offer The Mob a contract after spotting their "edgy" style — the adaptable elasticity of capitalism once again spelling the death of revolution.

About The Author

Nick Pinkerton


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"