Review: Get Up and Dance With the Netflix Original ‘Work It’

Courtesy of Netflix

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Remember way back in the day when you were sitting in front of your TV watching the cast of Step Up own the dance floor like it was nobody’s business? While Step Up remains a classic to this day, a new movie is here to make you groove. From Netflix comes a new dance movie titled Work It. The movie follows Quinn Ackerman (Sabrina Carpenter), a high school senior who has her sights set on attending Duke University. However, a bizarre misunderstanding during her college interview leaves her admission dependent on her performance at the Work It Dance Competition. Did I mention Quinn can’t dance? Along with her best friend Jas (Liza Koshy), the two form their own dance group to take on their school’s current team.

Part of what makes the movie noteworthy is its easy humor throughout. One of my favorite moments is early in the movie, when Jas tries to teach Quinn how to dance. Though Quinn’s skills are questionable and quite funny at first (me too, Quinn. Me too), she doesn’t stop throwing everything she has into improving. There’s no shortage of cheesy puns and funny one-liners (from Quinn: “I’m an illuminator … I keep it lit.”) from most of the characters. Jas has a particularly hilarious and adorable crush on someone, and the general tone of the movie keeps up the laughs.

Of course, you can’t have a great movie without a great cast, and Work It brings the perfect cast to the screen. Leading the charge are Carpenter, Koshy, and Jordan Fisher (Jake Taylor), who work hard to create the best dance team they can in a short amount of time, each bringing something to the table with their characters – Quinn brings her fierce determination, and Jas and Jake both use their dance experience and leadership from their experience to help motivate the team. Keiynan Lonsdale plays Julliard, the captain of the Thunderbirds, the school’s main dance team (and reigning Work It champions) who will do whatever it takes to defend the Thunderbirds’ title. He creates an excellent foil for TBD, Jas and Quinn’s new team. The supporting cast, especially the rest of TBD, all deliver great performances and create a dynamic group of people. Everyone in the cast, whether their characters are on a dance team or not, has the chance to shine.

Story wise, Work It is an underdog story, but it’s also one about doing what you love and following your passion. Quinn’s initial reason for starting the team was purely motivated by her desire to get into Duke, but she soon found a new love for dancing and a new friend group. Every other member of TBD uses their own hobbies and passions to better themselves as dancers. It’s easy to immediately root for TBD, their determination and effort admirable. Naturally, they hit obstacles along the way, but they push through to reach their goal. Regardless of the outcome, their journey serves as an excellent lesson and is one everyone can relate to.

Overall, Work It is a must-watch and the movie we all need right now. It relieves some of the stress of the real world, even if it’s only for an hour and a half. The soundtrack alone – which features songs by Sabrina Carpenter and Jordan Fisher – is enough to make you feel the beat and want to dance with the group. It’s a fun, light-hearted, feel-good movie that helps you escape into a happier place. It’s perfect for those times you need a good laugh and the best kind of ridiculousness in your life.

Work It is streaming now on Netflix.

Julia

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Julia joined the Nerds & Beyond team in 2019 but has always enjoyed writing and talking about her favorite fandoms. She's an avid reader, movie watcher, and a lover of all things Christian Bale. She loves The Office, Hannibal, Bob's Burgers, and Mr. Robot

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