I’m not big on recommendations. When someone tells me I HAVE to see this movie, watch this show, listen to this band, and so on, I usually give a vague, “I’ll check it out.” This is especially true when it comes to movies. I don’t even like watching movies I’ve never seen very much. Which begs the question of why I have a Netflix subscription when I usually just spend my nights watching Beavis and Butthead or The Office on my computer.
All I knew about Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo was the surname. Oftentimes I’ll be reading and see something jokingly referred to as (Something) 2: Electric Boogaloo. Of course this happens more often when you mostly stick to reading “Toyfare” magazine, but that’s not important. I even used that joke a couple years back in one of the Florida articles. However, when this movie was recommended to me, it was described as “I love this movie the same way you love Silent Night, Deadly Night 2.” Whoa. Since I couldn’t refuse an offer like that, I immediately queued it up in Netflix.
I was worried I wouldn’t be able to follow the plot, since I had never seen the original Breakin’. How would I understand the reappearing characters? I never saw their personalities, their memorable quotes, or their emotions. Would I be lost? There was only one way to find out. No, not watch the original Breakin’. That would make too much sense. I also doubt it would be as awesome as Breakin’ 2 had the potential to be. A sequel to an irreverent, unnecessary movie is usually great. The original irreverent, unnecessary movie usually isn’t. No, watching the original was out of the question; instead I was just going to jump right into the action. The Breakin’ 2 action.
The movie really couldn’t have gotten off to a better start. The first thing we see is a gigantic boom box. As the opening credits roll, we are treated to a visual bouillabaisse of awesomeness, including fingerless gloves, headbands, belts around thighs, Jeri curls, and, of course, break dancing.
We first meet Kelly, who I assume is from the first movie. She is at home in her father’s mansion, who is telling her she should take his offer of attending Princeton. After a back and forth between daughter and father where the main point was “dancing is awesome”, we are treated, less than four minutes in, to the fantastic Generic Line Number 1: “Well it’s my life, Dad!”
Kelly then goes to meet up with her old dance partners Turbo and Ozone. Someone starts a song on a boom box, which ignites a five minute music sequence where every single person in the neighborhood begins dancing down the street, eventually forming what can only be described as an unruly mob. This dance sequence continues to go on, MUCH longer than would be expected, even in a movie like this.
Eventually the posse winds up at “Miracles” a youth center that Turbo and Ozone volunteer at. This leads to more dancing. We then meet Byron, who is old.
Summary of next ten or so minutes: Man, they sure like to dance.
Enter: Rich white businessman who wants to demolish the youth center in order to build a shopping center.
More dancing. Jeez. One point of interest in this dance sequence is Kelly dancing in what appears to be her underwear in front of a bunch of little kids.
Now is when the drama really picks up. Kelly and her group get accosted by a dance gang called The Electros. Byron finds out he has 30 days to vacate Miracles, unless he can buy it out to the tune of $200,000. You know what that means. Fund raising montage. They wash cars, sell lemonade, sell “Maps to the Stars”, make balloon animals (?), among other high yield activities.
Quick plot points: all this activity results in only $7,000, so they decide to set up a street festival. Kelly finds out she has an audition for some big musical in Paris. Ozone flirts with a girl that looks like a “Beat It” era Michael Jackson. Ozone gets mad about Kelly’s audition. The Miracles gang has a dance battle with the Electros, which includes nunchakus and trash can shields. I don’t know how to tell who won. Finally, there is a confrontation between Rich White Guy and Byron.
After meeting a Spanish dancer, Turbo goes to ask a sleeping Ozone how to “get it on” with a girl. After standing up and zipping up his pants (?), Ozone explains the art of seduction. Then they dance with each other. Kelly, Turbo, and Ozone go to have dinner with her parents, which ends poorly after the father makes racist generalities about the kids at Miracles.
Ozone tries to call a truce with The Electros, saying they need to team up to save Miracles. Ozone is quickly rebuffed. Kelly then gets harassed by the Michael Jackson girl.
Finally, the day of reckoning is at hand. The Rich White Company is speaking before the city committee to discuss the fate of the building. Despite a few heart wrenching speeches from the gang, the committee lets The Rich White Company buy the land. The gang decides to fight back by harassing the construction workers. Turbo steals one of the construction workers’ toolboxes, and in the ensuing chase, falls down a flight of stairs and dies.
Well, maybe he didn’t die, but he does go to the hospital. This idiot’s fall costs Kelly her job in Paris, since she has to go visit Turbo, who is in a coma. The girl that Turbo likes comes out of a closet in Turbo’s hospital room (?), and proceeds to give Turbo a kiss. Which, of course, brings Turbo out of his coma. Everyone in the hospital, including Turbo and the rest of the patients, begins dancing. This dance sequence then, and I am not joking, brings a dead patient back to life, who then (of course) starts dancing.
After this, Kelly is eating pizza with Ozone, who is shirtless for some reason. Kelly’s father comes over with a proposal: if she goes to Princeton, he will give Miracles the money it needs. Instead of being, you know, sensible, Ozone tells her father they don’t need his money. We are then treated to awesome Generic Line Number 2: “NOBODY is going to tell me when to lay down my pride!”
Turbo escapes from the hospital with the help of his non-English speaking girlfriend.
When the bulldozers come to knock down Miracles, the gang defends the building by climbing on the machinery and starting to…
I’ll let you guess what they do there…
That’s right, dance.
Turbo refuses to move from out of the bulldozers’ way, so despite the fact that Rich White Guy tells the construction workers to run him over, the construction workers refuse and leave. A news team shows up, which prompts the city planner to change his mind for fear of losing the next election. Knowing he won’t get the land, Rich White Guy is then pressured by Byron into donating $10,000 to Miracles. Ozone then uses his incredible marketing skills to get crowds to the festival by promising “Dancing and juggling.” And really, can anyone resist the lure of juggling?
Since this is the part of the movie where all the loose ends get tied up, Kelly’s dad shows up to tell her he is proud of her, and donates the rest of the money needed to save Miracles. The Electros call their truce by dancing along with everyone else. Everyone is happy.
And this is the end of Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo. Was I glad this was recommended to me? I will say yes, conditionally. That condition being I wish I didn’t have to watch it alone at two in the morning. However, this would be an excellent movie to watch with a group of people. Then, after watching the movie you can turn the boom box to the max, have some dance battles, wash some cars, learn to love your parents, and, of course, learn a valuable lesson.