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How She Move (2007)

PG-13 | | Drama | 25 January 2008 (USA)
2:20 | Trailer

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Following her sister's death from drug addiction, a high school student is forced to leave her private school to return to her old, crime-filled neighborhood where she re-kindles an unlikely passion for the competitive world of step dancing.


Ian Iqbal Rashid


Annmarie Morais
3 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Tre Armstrong ... Michelle (as Tré Armstrong)
Boyd Banks ... Mike Evans
Clé Bennett ... Garvey
Ardon Bess Ardon Bess ... Uncle Cecil
Conrad Coates ... David Green
Keyshia Cole ... Herself
Eve Crawford Eve Crawford ... Seaton Teacher
DeRay Davis ... Himself
Shawn Fernandez ... Trey (as Shawn Desman)
Nina Dobrev ... Tall Girl in Bathroom
Kevin Duhaney Kevin Duhaney ... E.C.
Brennan Gademans ... Quake
Ingrid Gaynor Ingrid Gaynor ... Pam Green
Balford Gordon ... Neighbourhood Guy
Patrick Haye Patrick Haye ... Customer


Unable to afford the tuition needed to fund her private school education, Rayanna or Raya (Rutina Wesley) returns to her family home in the city while reluctantly re-evaluating her future. Upon learning that the top prize for an upcoming step-dancing competition is $50,000, Raya uses her impressive moves to earn a coveted slot in her good friend Bishop's (Dwain Murphy) predominantly male JSJ crew. Isolated from the local females due to jealousy and separated from her fellow dancers by gender, the ambitious dancer is subsequently kicked-off the team for showing off during a preliminary competition. Now, if Raya has any hope of realizing her medical school dreams, she will have to either earn back Bishop's trust or organize her own dance crew and start over from scratch. In the end, she eventually learns "how she move". Written by jck movies

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Set your dreams in motion.



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some drug content, suggestive material and language | See all certifications »



Canada | USA | France



Release Date:

25 January 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Como Ela Dança See more »

Filming Locations:

Hamilton, Ontario, Canada See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,957,471, 27 January 2008, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$7,070,459, 23 March 2008
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

SDDS | DTS | Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The movie originally had a scene set at the Canadian/U.S. border where the Canadian protagonists cross the border in order to get to the climatic dance contest in Detroit. However, this scene was cut out after a test screening because it confused many people in the test audience who had assumed up to that point that the movie was about American characters doing their thing in the United States. See more »


In the final dance scene, the windows in the car disappear and reappear during shots. See more »


Raya Green: It's funny, isn't it? How one moment can change a million after it.
See more »


References CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (2000) See more »


Performed by Fenom
Written by Rhonda Thompson (SOCAN)
Published by Rhonda Thompson
Courtesy of Rhonda Thompson
See more »

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User Reviews

Stepping Is Music, So Why the Music?
26 January 2008 | by maroontimes81See all my reviews

Beforehand Notification: I'm sure someone is going to accuse me of playing the race card here, but when I saw the preview for this movie, I was thinking "Finally!" I have yet to see one movie about popular African-influenced dance (be it popular hip hop moves, breaking, or stepping) where the main character was a Black woman. I've seen an excessive amount of movies where a non-Black woman who knew nothing about hip hop comes fresh to the hood and does a mediocre job of it (Breakin, Breakin 2, Save the Last Dance, Step Up), but the Black women in the film are almost nonexistent. That always bothered me considering so much of hip hop, African-influenced dance, and breaking was with Blacks and Latinos in massive amounts in these particular sets and it wasn't always men who performed it, so I felt this movie has been a long time coming. However, the race does not make the film, so I also wanted it to carry a believable plot; the dancing be entertaining; and interesting to watch.

Pros: I really enjoyed this film bringing Jamaican culture. I can't recall ever seeing a popular, mainstream film where all the main characters were Jamaican; had believable accents; and weren't stereotypical with the beanies. The steppers, family, friends, and even the "thugs" were all really intelligent, realistic people who were trying to love, live, and survive in the neighborhood they lived in by doing something positive. Even when the audience was made aware that the main character's sister chose an alternate lifestyle, it still didn't make the plot stereotypical. I was satisfied with the way it was portrayed. I LOVED the stepping; the romantic flirty relationship going on between two steppers; the trials that the main character's parents were going through; and how she dealt with coming back to her old neighborhood and dealing with Crabs in a Barrel. I respected that she was so intelligent and active at the same time, and so many other sistas in the film were handling themselves in the step world. They were all just as excellent as the fellas. I don't see that in too many movies nowadays, at least not those that would be considered Black films.

Cons: I'm not quite sure why the directors or whoever put the movie together did this, but I question whether they've been to real step shows. Whenever the steppers got ready to perform, some hip hop song would play in place of the steppers' hand/feet beats. At a real step show, there is zero need for music, other than to maybe entertain the crowds in between groups. And then when hip hop songs were played, sometimes the beat to the song was off to the beat of the steppers' hands and feet. It was awkward. I was more impressed with the stepping in this movie versus "Stomp the Yard" (another great stepping movie) because the women got to represent as fierce as the guys (in "Stomp the Yard," Meagan Good got all of a few seconds of some prissy twirl and hair flip and the (Deltas?) let out a chant and a few steps and were cut immediately). Even when there were very small scenes, the ladies tore it up, especially in the auto shop, and it was without all that music to drown out their physical music. I know soundtracks have to be sold, but the movie folks could've played the music in other parts of the film.

I'm not a Keyshia Cole fan, so every time I saw her, all I kept thinking was "Is it written in the script for her to constantly put her hand on her hip when she talks?" She looked uncomfortable on screen to me. I thought they should've used a host like Free or Rocsi instead. Deray Davis was funny as usual though. Also, I groaned when I found out that the movie was supposed to be in the ghetto, like stepping couldn't possibly happen anywhere else. Hollywood, as usual. However, only a couple of people were portrayed as excessively ignorant due to their neighborhood and losers, which mainstream movies tend to do.

I would've given this movie five stars, but the music playing killed it for me. I definitely plan to buy it when it comes out and hopefully the bonus scenes will include the actual step shows without all the songs.

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