The world of underground competitive dancing may be everything movies like “Stomp the Yard: Homecoming” make it out to be: a dangerous, cutthroat environment full of romance, intrigue and internal politics.
That doesn’t make it any more interesting in a movie, because to me the idea of guys getting so worked up over a dance contest is patently ridiculous.
“Homecoming” tells the story of Chance (Collins Pennie), who has become ensnared by a gangster (David Banner) who mostly just stands around glaring at people and fondling the toothpick in his mouth. This passes for tough-guy bravado.
Chance finds his way out of the seedy dance-hall underbelly and gets into the fraternity Theta Nu at Truth University, who has their own problems with rivals.
These, then, are the fratboy version of the same toughs we saw moments before, showing their abs and saying silly things like “They call me LAX, ’cause I stay fly” because the girls ooh and ahh over their six-pack of stilted quips.
Turns out there’s a big step competition coming up, and the Theta Nus need Chance to help them. But can he overcome the brutes who want to beat him into submission, and the other standard problems everyone else in the world has (his dad wants him to help with the family restaurant, and thinks he’s wasting his time with this dance stuff, and his girl is angry that’ he’s been making time with someone else…oh, like is SO not fair!).
Columbus Short, who starred in the first “Yard” film, makes an appearance here in a glorified cameo. I’ve been a fan of his since the failed TV series “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip,” but his brief appearance (essentially two scenes and a reaction shot or two) are not nearly enough to make this film bearable.
“Homecoming” is the type of film that is so frequently lampooned that it’s hard to take it seriously at all. The acting is c-level at best, the plot is contrived and lazy, and the star power is non-existent. It’s almost as if they were trying to make a film that would be easy to make fun of.
I’m completely willing to concede that this film and others like it are not made for me, but I could find much more worth cheering for if there was some sort of effort put forth into making a quality picture.
If you really are into dance films like this, I guess you might enjoy “Homecoming,” but that doesn’t make it any better a film.
DVD extras are cursory, but in line with where DVD is going it’s actually robust enough: filmmaker commentary, deleted scenes, and a making-of featurette, along with previews of other films.