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Streetdance Family Review

Streetdance Family Review

Providing the ultimate behind the scenes look at the world of competitive street dance, Debbie Shuter and Adam Tysoe’s Streetdance Family follows Britain’s Got Talent finalists Entity on their journey to the 2014 Hip Hop World Championship in Germany. Shot over the period of one year, this independently produced documentary shows the under 16 crew coming together to share their love of street dance and beat the competition.

Starting in the group’s East London training room, the film introduces dance teacher and mentor Tashan Muir, as well as the kids in his devoted crew. They might come from different backgrounds, but these children have one thing in common: they live to dance. Whether it’s the loss of a parent or being bullied, all of these kids have had some sort of struggle to contend with and have found a home with the Entity Allstars, a place where they can be themselves and let loose creatively. They are, as the title suggests, a family.

Shuter and Tysoe stick with the crew single-mindedly as they train and travel to the European Championship in Italy, which they’re subsequently disqualified from over a conflict in the music Tashan chooses, before heading to the World Championship to battle the best in youth street dance. In amongst the rehearsals and travelling, the children are interviewed with their parents and friends, revealing personal struggles and demons that threaten to override the dancing. It’s heartening to see these kids rise up against the day-to-day struggles in life and channel their emotions into something positive.8Particularly prevalent in the documentary are the behind the scenes politics and disagreements between managerial bodies and the parents, which actually have nothing to do with the children and yet they are the ones who suffer as a result. At one point they’re left sitting on the floor in a corridor, upset and bemused, whilst Tashan is shouted at and belittled over a decision-making discrepancy. The camera drops to the floor as swear words are uttered against the backdrop of the dance arena. Through all this, it’s the adults that come across as infants and the kids that audiences will feel sorry for.

Despite the conflicts that follow them all the way to the Worlds, there’s one thing that shines through, and that’s the resilience of these children. After all, it’s not the winning that counts, it’s the taking part…though this crew really want to win. Shuter and Tysoe perfectly capture the group’s dedication and drive, culminating in an emotional finale that audiences will struggle not to feel 100% invested in. Whilst unlikely to appeal to those without an already formed interest in the dance or hip-hop world, Streetdance Family is a real passion-project that shows what a positive impact dance can have on young people.


Streetdance Family is in cinemas from 27 May

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