Another cliche for the list check! Well, as a great lover of teen movies, I couldn’t help but write about the new movie Work it, by Netflix. It’s an incredible comedy that made me laugh, cry, fall in love with the characters – which, by the way, made me think that I will never live anything of the sort – and even made me want to become a dancer. The new original production was released on August 7th and it already made the first position in the top 10 most-watched movies in Brazil. Surely, you will recognize some of the faces in the film, starred by the amazing Sabrina Carpenter, Jordan Fisher (our eternal John Ambrose from PS I still Love You), and Liza Koschy. Okay, but what is it that makes it worth a watch?
- The plot
The film tells the story of Quinn Ackerman, a smart, determined and a bit clumsy teenager, who is in the last year of school and has the dream of studying in Duke University, the same that her father attended. From the start, it’s already possible to see that she’s willing to do everything to reach her biggest goal. And that may even include lying in an admission interview and joining her school’s dance team, the Thunderbirds, to perform in the Work It Dance Competition. Eventually, however, she realizes this task will be more difficult than she’d imagined.
Like many other students, Quinn spent her life trying to build the perfect student profile to impress colleges, which led her to perform almost all possible extracurricular activities, except dance. After realizing what a situation she had entered, the character asks for help from Jas, her best friend and one of the highlights of the Thunderbirds, to get ready for the team’s tryouts. The captain, Juilliard, a very self-centered leader, ends up rejecting her, since she’s not exactly the most brilliant dancer ever. Then Quinn has the brilliant idea to form her own group along with Jas, which brings them to a great journey seeking students around school with hidden talents and a famous choreographer, Jake Taylor, a three time Work It competition champion.
Jake only agrees to work with them if they make it to the semi-finals of the competition – which they end up achieving – and things start falling into place. Throughout the movie, we are able to witness Quinn discover her new two greatest passions, dance – and Jake (spoiler alert). What seemed to be like a relationship between a mentor and a student turned out to be a great love story. The way dance connects them is surreal!
One of my personal favorite scenes is when they dance together in the street, the music really makes us feel like they were meant for each other, you know? The girl who was not able to follow the steps of the choreography before is now the one who lights up the stage and the team, with her lightness and grace. However, this is a very difficult process for her, as her mother is totally against the character taking the focus of studies to embark on this adventure, a fact that generates several conflicts between them.
- The life lessons
The film teaches us so much about self knowledge. It’s beautiful to see how, little by little, Quinn discovers things that really make her happy and she didn’t know before because she spent a lot of time trying to build the stereotype of a perfect student. The film teaches us there is no point in planning, because the best things in life, the ones that make us feel alive, come unexpectedly, and that, above all, you should always be yourself, without trying to fit in standards and accomplish others’ expectations. Besides, we see how people with different styles can overcome their differences and grow together, each donating a little of themselves to add up in other´s lives. Much more than just a teenager cliche, Work It has a lot to teach us and, more than anything, inspire us.
About the cast, the movie really stands out. Work It shows how representativity is important and necessary to the society that we live in. The diversity of actors in the plot – from black people, including Keyinan Lonsdale, also admittedly queer, to indians, like Indiana Mehta – is a great differential of the ordinary teenage movies. I’m sure that a lot of young people felt represented watching the film, and it’s very special for them to know that there are people willing to give them space and voice in big productions.
- The music
And at last, but not least, the soundtrack and the choreographies are also a big strong point in Work It! The main track “Let Me Move You” is interpreted by the protagonist, Sabrina Carpenter, and it’s amazing how her voice fits perfectly with the music! I’ll warn you: it will stick to your head! With the queen Alicia Keys being part of the producer group, certainly the soundtrack would be a hit: Dua Lipa, Meghan Trainor, Zara Larsson, Ciara, Tropkillaz, 2NE1 and Galantis are also present in the movie with some of their successes. The breathtaking choreography was done by Aakomom Jones, a famous choreographer who had already worked in productions like “Pitch Perfect” and “Black Panther”. He does a wonderful job at Work It, mixing different rhythms and styles for each character.
Well, I believe that after this short description, it’s clear you need to watch Work It, right? This is the type of movie that will hold your attention right from the start, I can assure you. So, if you´re looking for a good teenage comedy, with a little romance and a wonderful soundtrack to watch during this quarantine, I recommend it. Go to Netflix now and play it, I’m sure you will fall in love.
The article above was edited by Giulia Gianolla.
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