Step Up 3D deserves two ratings: one for the movie, and one for the dance sequences. The story is hackneyed and cliched, and if it weren't for the dancing, this would be a one star review. But then there are the dance sequences, which would rate five stars for the excitement they bring to the screen.
If you've seen Fame, or Breakin', or Dead Poet's Society, you know the characters and what they're going to go through. There's the college student torn between loyalty to his parents and his love of dance. There's his longtime female just friend. Oh, if only he could see past that. There's the struggling dancer with the loft who needs to win the big dance contest to keep the dream alive. Seriously, it's as if the filmmakers couldn't be bothered with coming up with a better story. The acting isn't much better, but what do you expect from dancers.
Luckily, what the actors lack in acting skills and the filmmakers lack in story skills they all make up for in the dance sequences. This is a situation when the 3-D actually enhances film, rather than using it as a gimmick. You're able to get in the middle of the sequences, and that makes these scenes pop. The filmmakers are also not tied down to modern dance, and it's nice to see them bring in dances from the golden age of movie musicals. So do I recommend Step Up 3-D? Yeah, I guess I do, just turn off your brain if they're not dancing.