ABCD: Andy Body Can Dance (2013) Film Review

Bollywood’s latest dance film ‘ABCD’ (Any Body Can Dance) brings out the true spirit throughout. Starring Prabhu Deva, as the lead actor, the film is filled with a fun storyline, taking dance to another level.

Director Remo D’Souza, creates a stunning film with mind blowing visuals, gradually moving the audience. ABCD follows a predictable storyline, in which I was slightly disappointed due to lack of originality. The film continuously references back to the Step Up movie franchise, where it follows similar characters and undeniably a very similar story line. Though, on a brighter note, it brings its own Bollywood ‘Dhamaka’ flesh, increasing its production value.

ABCD follows the life of Vishnu (Prabhu Deva), a dance chorographer for the famous dance group ‘JDC’. However, with a selfish and provocative manager Jahangir (Kay Kay Menon) in place, wealth, victory and his job title get to the best of him. This where he begins to cheat with the scores to allow JDC to always win. Though, pure heart Vishnu, see’s past these trickeries and confronts Jahangir. This leads to Vishnu getting demoted, where he confidently states that he will naturally prove his talent. Lazing around at home, Vishnu notices dancers scattered around his village, from chases to events. Gradually, he forms a dance group ‘DDR’, where the members both share difference and similarities. We see DDR grow as a team, where several unforeseen events take place, leading to catastrophe. Will Vishnu reach his goal and prove Jahangir wrong?

DDR are gradually formed together, where we see the sparks of friendship rise. The cast of DDR are profoundly likeable, where each of them brings their own style, flavor and uniqueness. Indeed, a few have their arguments, their jealousies and past grudges, however these features make ABCD more real and genuine.

The dance routines are extremely impeccable, where talent shines throughout. The break-dance genre is evident, where each step is complimented with the beat of the music. Choreography is in its finest detail, where we simply are encouraged to join in with them. Hard work is propelled, emphasizing enthusiasm and their passion for dancing. Likewise, Step Up, ABCD consists of a ‘Dancing in the rain’ routine, which I have to admit was gratifying. The splashes of the water, slow-motioned HD visuals complimented with energized, diligent beats was memorable.

ABCD brings colours, love and joy through its powerful visuals. The Ganpati Bapa festival shouts culture, beauty and the true India spirit. People dancing to the rhythm, realistically enjoying themselves and celebrating, is beautifully denoted. The dance battle becomes aggressive, yet passion is transparent where each move is enunciated and filled with true emotion.

Prabhu Deva perpetuates his role as ‘Vishnu’ very well. His, stoic and serious persona are evident through his calm tone, lack of dialogue and honest soul. Deva is truly the star of ABCD, whom becomes everyone’s Guru. This aspect of teaching is evident, through his focus, determination and maturity. Vishnu see’s past all the differences, and unites the group through the power of dance. He neither over-acts or under, it’s just right and his pacing is perfect.

A true moral is emphasized throughout the film; to follow your passion and heart regardless of the world. Parents of these youths disagree with Dance as a career and expect them to ‘settle down’. However, Vishnu encourages them to see past the traditions, questioning whether they are happy settled down. A heart-touching piece of dialogue which challenges societal norms and values. This “mindset” that Indian parents have against their children is significantly reinforced, thus not only building the tension but also creating a realistic and relatable approach.

Overall, ABCD is a great family film to watch. A few downsides due to its vast similarities with Step Up, however in some cases this can be over looked. The dance battles are profoundly exciting, where the music scores are mind blowing. The cast brings the film to life and work together as a team to create powerful dance routines. ABCD truly brings drama intertwined with emotional scenes, leaving the audience filled with enigmas. Most importantly, it teaches us that Any Body Can Dance.

My Rating: 7/10

Written by: Meera Darji


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