|You Got Served
2004 - PG-13 - 100 Mins.
|Director: Chris Stokes
|Producer: Max Gousse, Kevin Halloran, Kris Cruz Toledo, Billy Pollina
|Written By: Chris Stokes
|Starring: Omarion, Marques Houston, J-Boog, Jennifer Freeman, and Steve Harvey
|Review by: Joe Rickey
After appearing in the absolutely abysmal December film 'Love Don’t Cost a Thing,' Steve Harvey, who appears in 'You Got Served' as a kind of judge for the dance “battles” that are the selling point for this film, is now one film away from starring in a trifecta of films so incredibly poorly written that it is a wonder that they ever got the green light. 'You Got Served' is perhaps even worse than 'Love Don’t Cost a Thing' in that at least that film seemed to have a connected storyline with a resolution in sight whereas 'You Got Served' is a disjointed film full of underdeveloped characters in the service of what could be termed a malnourished storyline.
What little there is of a storyline for 'You Got Served' revolves around two brothers whose dream is to open their very own recording studio. In order to garner the money to do so, they enter into a dance contest against street dancers who take the contest very seriously. Drive-by shootings, death threats, and other criminal acts follow in what is a truly terrible film.
First off, might as well get what little the film does well out of the way. The various dance contests are well filmed if you don’t mind numerous jump cuts and other techniques that were pioneered by Jerry Bruckheimer action films. They provide for a little excitement except for the fact that they don’t really occur often enough to offset what the film does wrong.
Chief among the problems with 'You Got Served' is that it presents two main characters that are anything but fun to spend time with. They constantly use vulgar language and take advantage of others in order to get what they want. If you can’t even care about the main characters, what does that mean concerning the minor characters? Well, the film at least makes sure to present the other characters as even less likable personalities; if that is even humanly possible.
It is made blatantly evident that although he may be able to film the music video-like dance sequences with skill, writer-director Chris Stokes does not have a clue how to properly pace a film not to mention produce scenes with even a shred of drama present. The film lurches from one situation to another with little flow or even an entirely coherent narrative. The supposedly dramatic portions of the film come across a laughable in the incapable hands of Stokes, not that he is helped any by a cast of actors who don’t pass muster at a community theatre level, not to mention a major motion picture.
Omarion (Yes, just Omarion with no last name) delivers his lines with a stilted and unreal demeanor that seems to come from the Ice Cube School of dramatic acting. Marques Houston fares a little better if only because he doesn’t have as many lines. Supporting characters basically follow suit with one-note performances by everyone but Steve Harvey, who seems to know that he is in a dud so he hams it up and ends up being more entertaining to watch than anyone else in the film.
Overall, 'You Got Served' is a dreadful motion picture not worth seeing unless you are willing to sit through an hour and ten minutes of what passes for drama just to witness the well done dance sequences.