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Tracking Shot

As dancer Honey Daniels, Jessica Alba drops gerundial g's, looks after the waifs of abusive families, and flings herself about with such military exertion that you feel like renewing your gym membership. Honey shows signs of campy life early on: dancefloor catfight, girlfriend who prefaces every sentence with "Girl . . . " Thanks to a smitten music-biz honcho, Honey has a chance to choreograph videos—though her friend cautions, "Every guy's a director when he wants some booty."

Girl, you'll be a choreographer soon.
photo: Ava Gerlitz/Universal Studios
Girl, you'll be a choreographer soon.

The star-is-born trajectory nourishes some howlers ("Hip-hop can't take you all the places ballet can," points out Honey's mom, with all the logic of someone living in a cave), as well as a thumpingly unsubtle portrayal of the creative process: Chancing on a hoops game, Honey mimics the dribbles and feints . . . yes . . . ahh . . . and soon her dancers have a fresh, basketball-flavored routine. But Honey would rather be a saint than a star. Rebuffing her director, she gets blacklisted—right as she's raising money for a studio to teach needy kids how to pop and lock. If you doubt whether Honey can scrape together the dough, this is probably the movie for you.

 
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