(Screen Media Films)

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B-Girl, the saga of a young Brooklynite trying to make it in the male-dominated break dancing scene, is a great movie idea in theory. Unlike the pretty cool dance moves the cast shows off, the execution is not so smooth.

The movie, from Screen Media Films and directed by Emily Dell, seems to have had one major casting problem; do we cast dancers or actors to play dancers? The choice seemed to make sense, the DVD boasted that B-Girl’s star, Jules “Lady Jules” Urich performed with the Beat Freaks on America’s Best Dance Crew, and all of the supporting actors had similar credentials. The problem is that the actors are actually dancers, and therefore cannot act.

The story itself is pretty good, although sometimes it seems to take a bit too much onto its plate at once. B-Girl seems to try to be the Rocky of break dancing, but instead of just focusing on Angel’s reconditioning to compete, it lumps in the issues alcoholism, gang problems, broken homes, and a love story for good measure. Here it falls short for not actually developing these issues; if Angel’s mother is such an alcoholic, why does she come off as such a supportive parent and only appear drunk once? The presentation comes off as shallow.

The long and short of B-Girl is that it’s worth a watch if you’re interested in some cool dancing but not a good movie. I can’t even say I didn’t like B-Girl because I was pretty amazed at the things the characters could do on the dance floor, but I wouldn’t dare say it was by any stretch of the imagination a good movie.

Jesse Leon

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