Reviews of the Incredible Dancing in Duane Adler’s “Make Your Move”

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We all know that critics can be harsh, especially when they critique a movie on what it “isn’t” rather than what it “is.” Make Your Move was released in the United States on April 18 to mixed reviews, some critics damned the film based on its the plot, while others absolutely delighted in it. Hmmmm. Well which is it?

However, thank goodnessthat most all critics agree that the dancing in this “dance” film is absolutely TOPS.  Below are some reviews for you to read about how this movie fares with the critics.  Click on the links to see the full reviews.

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From DVD Talk (July 22, 2014)

 Story-wise, there are a number of complications involving permits, gunshots, viral videos, and sibling rivalry, but Adler is wise enough to blaze through this material, keeping the focus of the film on the dance routines and the sexual chemistry. … There’s a bit of electricity coming off this thing — no guilt in taking pleasure.

Make Your Move doesn’t break ground in the world of fiction, but its high-energy, does-what’s-advertised pleasures will leave plenty of viewers tapping their feet. Recommended.

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From IMDB User Review (April 19, 2014)

“Make Your Move” is one of the best movies about dancing and expressing the feelings through the moves, about passion, hard work and, of course, love. … To say more, I was really amazed by the incredible choreography, the soundtracks were fabulous as well, and I absolutely love the cast and the crew … “Make Your Move” is an amazing movie about dancing, passion, love and so much more ….

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The Nerdist (April 19, 2014)

Duane Adler’s Make Your Move (not to be confused with Step Up, Take the Lead, Stomp the Yard, or any other dance films with an imperative verb in the title) is everything a dance film needs to be. It has dance-talented leads, a hugely charismatic lead actress, an interesting enough story, and enough dance sequences to keep the movie afloat. Indeed, there is a dance sequence in the middle of Make Your Move wherein our handsomely bland hero Donny (Derek Hough) and our chirpy and wonderful heroine Aya (Korean pop idol BoA) seduce and undress one another – in dance – as a form of foreplay. The foreplay dance is one of the best dance numbers I’ve seen in any dance film.

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From Roger Ebert.com (April 18, 2014)

“Make Your Move” has a pretty complicated plot, involving corporate sponsorship, event planning, career moves for dancers, visa and immigration issues, not to mention various family dramas and burgeoning romance. It’s a lot to absorb. But a movie like “Make Your Move” rests on the success of its various dance sequences, not its plot. And the dancing here is exciting, innovative, and specific.

“Make Your Move” has an underlying sweetness that serves it well. … It features a diverse cast, accurately reflecting the dance world and its inhabitants. Adler and Middleton know that when we come to a dance movie, we want a chance to see, really see, those dances. They find a way to do just that.

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From the Hollywood Reporter (April 17, 2014)

The Romeo and Juliet-inspired plotline basically serves as a framing device allowing the opportunity for a plethora of exuberant dance sequences that particularly show off Hough’s considerable talent. Although it takes a while for the main characters to hook up, Hough’s Donny seals the deal with an impromptu dance duet in which he removes his shirt to reveal his admirably chiseled torso. While the Astaire-Rogers movies used dance as a metaphor for sex, in these modern variations it’s an elaborate form of foreplay.

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From the New York Times (April 17, 2014)

Duane Adler, the writer of “Step Up” and “Save the Last Dance,” capably directs “Make Your Move,” a soapy, flashy confection that juxtaposes Mr. Hough’s tap dancing with the Japanese drumming style Taiko, tossed with liberal helpings of contemporary hip-hop moves. Mr. Hough, a “Dancing With the Stars” champion, impresses with his footwork and sufficiently fulfills his romantic-lead duties.

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From the L.A. Times (April 17, 2014)

Duane Adler’s film is a celebration of cultural hybridization. Its core dance styles are a wonderfully frenetic fusion of tap and hip-hop and a truly novel blend of Japanese taiko drumming and K-pop girl-group choreography.

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From the New York Daily News (April 17, 2014)

Director Duane Adler’s energetic dance flick is bound to be dismissed as a “Step Up” wannabe. But most of that series’ recent sequels were not as good as “Make Your Move.”

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From Soompi.com (April 16, 2014)

The wide variety of music and dance styles are sure to entice even the most non-dance friendly of viewers as per writer and director Duane Adler’s time-tested dance romance movie skills. The film is vivid, gorgeous, and definitely worth a watch.

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From Arts Beat L.A. (April 1, 2014)

…You probably haven’t seen taiko drumming to dub step underscoring plus all kinds of dreamy, fluid modern and hip-hop dancing in one sweet movie, so now you can!

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