Title: Work It!
MPAA Rating: TV-14
Director: Laura Terruso
Starring: Sabrina Carpenter, Keiynan Lonsdale, Liza Koshy
Runtime: 1 hr 33 mins
What It Is: Quinn Akerman (Carpenter) is a focused young woman. Her dream is to attend Duke University the very same college her father once went to. When she’s told that her transcript doesn’t stand out in a sea filled with excellent transcript. To make herself more appealing, she tells her recruiter that she is a member of the extremely popular (and successful) dance group. Except she’s not. Now she has to figure out a way to learn how to dance and get good enough to join the group.
What We Think: By and large this is standard fare for these sorts of “teen” films. Narratively it does not present itself with anything you haven’t seen before. Think to Bring It On or Stomp the Yard. Like these aforementioned films, it features dance as a central theme. It’s high school setting working to feel familiar, instead, it makes the whole process stale. Bring it On is, in hindsight, an excellent example of what this wanted to do. This film lacks the correct narrative tone. Its script betrays the story by presenting itself too simply. Though familiar there’s nothing to write home about. Most of the acting is meh at best. I can see the appeal of someone like Liza Koshy but sadly she’s not an actress. That’s evident. Sabrina Carpenter is putting in some overtime. She’s trying to flex those thespian muscles and sadly she lacks the script to make it work. Terruso’s direction seems to be on cruise control. I don’t think that’s a reflection in her. Moreso an issue with the script. This is often a thing that can hamper these teen comedies and that’s certainly the case here.
Our Grade: C-, I mean this film is on Netflix and so its mediocrity is the order of the day. Unless the streaming service feels the film has awards contention…which if I haven’t been clear this doesn’t. Then it instead seems as they just sorta dump stuff on there. I mean some of 2020’s worst pieces of cinema reside on the app as originals. Check this out…maybe. It really isn’t much to write home about. Check this out if you’re super into teen movies.