Review: Showdown: The Movie

by - 21:28

This is a story of one man’s quest to guide a group of young people to fame and glory in the hip-hop world. He took them out of the streets and onto a glitzy performing stage in the big city. He got them to focus their misguided anger on the one thing they are good at – breakdancing.

Showdown: The Movie should really have been called Straight Outta George Town. Directed by Kharil M. Bahar, Showdown: The Movie is the big-screen adaptation of popular local hip-hop dance reality show series Showdown, which ended its run in 2013.

In Showdown: The Movie, the heat is on for members of Battle crew (played by Reza Hasbi, Jehan Shukri, Aiman Asmawar, Azim Aris, Amirul Hadi and Ben Laden) to prove themselves at a local dance competition. If they win, it’s RM100,000 in the bag.

If the movie sounds like it’s two years too late that’s because it is – production wrapped in 2014. But, if you think having a long-delayed release date meant the movie is not watchable, then just like me, you’d be pleasantly surprised.

Showdown: The Movie managed to entertain by focusing on the essential element of the movie – the dance sequences.

Viewers get to the see the action from every possible angle. You want to see what a b-boy’s headspin looks like from above? You got it. The movie also uses a lot of slow motion to capture the dancers’ every leaps, bounds and squats. Then there’s music from local hip-hop royalty like Too Phat, Waris and The Tarik Crew for every visually-exciting dance sequence.

This is how they do the team secret handshake in Showdown: The Movie. Photo: Grand Brilliance/Primeworks

This is how they do the team secret handshake in Showdown: The Movie. Photo: Grand Brilliance/Primeworks

To put it simply, Showdown: The Movie takes its dancing seriously and shows it off proudly on screen.

Before someone screams “dance fatigue”, the movie takes a break from all the action to focus mainly on Battle Crew leader Kimi (Reza). He has a secret that he’s not telling him teammates. On top of that, he has an on-going feud with Ringgo (a badass Iedil Putra), the leader of rival dance crew and defending champions Xtreme.

To drive this point home, the audience is served with one too many staring competitions between Kimi and Ringgo. OK, to make it seem more exciting – there’s a lot of staring between the two in extreme close-up and in slow motion.

Unfortunately, this is also where Showdown: The Movie suffers the most. It doesn’t do much to inform the audience. We never know how members of the Battle Crew met each other or how Xtreme crew became one of the country’s top breakdancing team. Even the reason for the feud between Kimi and Ringgo is not explored much.

However, I do know a lot about cloth material and colour thanks to Azad Jazmin’s hilarious performance as the fast-talking, no-nonsense self-appointed manager of the Battle crew.

Then again, Showdown: The Movie delivers where it really matters. It all comes down to… how they break it down on the dance floor. With highly-engaging dance sequences to go with infectious tunes, do we really need anything else?

Showdown: The Movie definitely has all the right moves.


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