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Save the last dance for the original
Save The Last Dance 2 (DVD)
Member Name: burtybookworm
Save The Last Dance 2 (DVD)
Date: 04/01/09, updated on 04/01/09 (139 review reads)
Advantages: good dance sequences, main characters good!
Disadvantages: storyline weak, soundtrack not up to the first film
Why Did I Choose to Watch this Film?!
Anything to do with almost any kind of dancing and I'll watch it. I used to do all sorts of (amateur level) competitions across the country from the age of 7 - 17 in ballroom and Latin, freestyle, rock n roll but since giving up, my passion for dance and anything dancy has not abated 11 years on. Therefore, I am always drawn to the dance films, such as Dirty Dancing, Honey, Save the Last Dance and Step Up.
I really enjoyed Save the Last Dance, it was one of the better films in this genre, and I have been meaning to watch the sequel for a while. I had borrowed it off a friend, and finally I have got round to watching it!
This starts almost where we left Sara, the main character, in the original. Sara, a promising ballerina, has gotten in to a prestigious school which will, with lots of hard work and determination, further her career In ballet. There is a section at the beginning of the film where the viewer is told that she and her boyfriend (predictably, one of the big storylines in the first one) have broken up because of the distance and so she can focus on her studies.
This film shows her starting in her new school, trying hard to impress her strict ballet teacher and falling once again for the boy who loves hip hop. The battle between her passion for contemporary dance and her career as a hard working ballet dancer is fierce, and made even more complicated by the relationships she has with Miles, the love interest) and her teacher.
Sequels in my opinion, rarely live up to the original, and this is no exception. I firstly thought I was to be disappointed by the casting of a new actress, Izabella Miko, to play Sara. The first movie saw Julia Stiles play this role. However, I found that there was a softer side to Izabella's portrayal of Sara and actually her character was one of my favourite things about the film as a whole. I still loved Julia Stiles' portrayal, but the actress in the sequel brought something new to it I felt. I also loved the casting of Miles, who is Sara's new love interest. Firstly, he is incredibly sexy and talented. Secondly, his good natured, friendly personality meant that I immediately I warmed to him.
Aside from the two main characters, I wouldn't say there are any other characters that need a particular mention. I found Sara's roommate extremely annoying and quite honestly pointless and unnecessary, but then I guess a girl needs a friend to be shown in a film such as this! There was also the character of Sara's mentor which I felt could have been developed a bit more. Despite offering Sarah drugs to keep her slim and keep her awake as well as being insanely jealous of Sara's talent, this storyline wasn't developed and was soon forgotten. It just felt like wasted time and I felt it was almost pointless adding these scenes to the film at all.
I feel that the reason that the first film was such as success was the blend of brilliant casting, the mix of traditional and contemporary dancing, an amazing sound track and a great storyline exploring racial tension. The second film, aside from the first two bits I mentioned, didn't have this. I found the soundtrack unmemorable whereas I went out and bought the soundtrack for the original it was so amazing. (There is a rather good cameo in this film from Nee-Yo though which made up for it!)
However the main let down really is the general story line. Unlike the original where the conflict between her passion for the two different styles of dancing mirrors her personal life, Sara's conflict in the second one is barely a conflict at all.
In the first movie, Sara has problems with some of the black girls in the neighbourhood as they believe she is taking one of the very few "good" black men in their rough and violent neigbourhood. I realise that the same story cannot be done twice, but I just felt this story lacked a little something to make it more interesting. The first film felt a bit more unique from most chick flicks, but the story this time was more about Sara "finding" herself and what she actually wanted to do with her life, it had a message, about following your heart bla bla, but nothing that made it different really from all the other films out there.
I have mentioned quite a few negatives for this film, but because of all of the wonderful dancing in it, I did still enjoy the film! Once again there are some great dance sequences and I enjoyed the love story between Sara and Miles. Everything else wasn't up to the original standards, and I certainly won't be rushing out to by the sound track any time soon.
Info about the DVD
This DVD has both Save the Last Dance and Save the Last Dance 2 on it. Rated 12.
Total duration of whole DVD: 196 mins
Summary: If you like dance films, this could be worth watching