DI All Stars Quad Crop
2013 Running time: 106 Certificate: u Rating: 3
KA All Stars

Synopsis

Junior wannabe hipster Ethan (Horrid Henry's Theo Stevenson) is drawn into an unlikely alliance with frustrated street dancer Jaden (Akai Osei-Mansfield) to save their East London youth centre - The Garage - from the wrecking ball of property developers. Combing the streets for local talent to join their All Stars crew, they count on raising enough cash for a special show to save the club. This warm-hearted kids' caper gets added star wattage from the likes of Extras' Ashley Jensen and Outnumbered's Hugh Dennis.

Director

  • Ben Gregor

Cast

  • Theo Stevenson

  • Akai Osei-Mansfield

  • Ashley Jensen

  • Fleur Houdijk

  • Kimberley Walsh

Review

There's no denying the infectious enthusiasm in a British mash-up of Grange Hill and StreetDance that may leave adults groaning...but anklebiters grinning.

It's a well-worn formula - a gang of youngsters have to form a dance troupe to put on a show that will save their local youth club - but what it lacks in budget it makes up for in bravado.

Horrid Henry's Theo Stevenson is slightly miscast as Ethan, a unputdownable, pint-sized player whose breezy confidence hides his own heartache at his parents' estrangement...and the self-delusion of his ducking and diving dad.

Elsewhere, Osei-Mansfield delivers a persuasive performance as Jaden, the son of pushy black parents who only really wants to dance. Yet grim domestic issues are never overplayed and the emphasis is very much on the kids themselves.

The two boys reluctantly join forces to save The Garage, a rather-too utopian youth centre altruistically run by Ashley Jensen, who is no stranger to this sort of children's TV style after her appearance in Nativity!

Giving the cast a bit of muscle are an (underused) Hugh Dennis as the school headmaster although Mark Heap gives us his best bureaucratic rotter as a devious councillor who's in cahoots with a local developer.

It doesn't really offer much to anybody over twelve...but there's plenty of positive thinking and decent role models for a younger audience.