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How She Move (2008)


Average Rating: 5.9/10
Reviews Counted: 78
Fresh: 51
Rotten: 27

Critics Consensus: Despite a formulaic plot, the energetic and gritty How She Move is elevated by a commanding debut performance by Rutina Wesley.

Average Rating: 5.8/10
Reviews Counted: 27
Fresh: 15
Rotten: 12

Critics Consensus: Despite a formulaic plot, the energetic and gritty How She Move is elevated by a commanding debut performance by Rutina Wesley.


Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 32,678


Movie Info

An aspiring medical student whose drug-addicted sister has recently died and who may be forced to relocate from her posh private school to the crime-infested neighborhood in which she was raised enters a step-dancing competition in hope of securing the funds needed to continue her education. Unable to afford the tuition needed to fund her private-school education, ambitious teen Raya returns to her family home in the city and is reluctantly forced to reevaluate her future. Upon learning that the … More

PG-13 (for some drug content, suggestive material and language)
Directed By:
Written By:
Annmarie Morais
In Theaters:
Apr 29, 2008
Box Office:
Paramount Vantage - Official Site


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Critic Reviews for How She Move

All Critics (79) | Top Critics (28) | Fresh (51) | Rotten (27) | DVD (8)

When they dance, the effect isn't exuberant release -- every cartilage-crushing stomp-clap gets more and more furious. This is cheerleading in hell.

Full Review… | January 29, 2008
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic

How She Move was shot on the cheap in 16-mm. film, and some of it is a little drab-looking, but it has energy and bravado.

Full Review… | January 28, 2008
New Yorker
Top Critic

As we replay last year's step-dance hit Stomp the Yard, the ostensible message about working hard in school gets stomped out of the yard.

Full Review… | January 25, 2008
New York Post
Top Critic

There's not much that's surprising in How She Move, but watching how she moves is a pleasure.

Full Review… | January 25, 2008
Seattle Times
Top Critic

How She Move isn't a great film or even a terribly well-made film, but it has its moments and, of course, it has the ending it's promised all along.

Full Review… | January 25, 2008
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

Even if the setting is novel and the leads seem authentic, How She Move is all too content to step down a well-worn path.

Full Review… | January 25, 2008
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic

Shows that there's more to Canadian film than icy introspection, but it also shows they can wallow in formula as thickly as their Yank counterparts.

Full Review… | January 2, 2014

Another week, another urban dance movie from the United States.

Full Review… | October 18, 2008

The formula is so old that you can almost forgive it. What I couldn't forgive is the soap opera/O.C.-like subplots.

Full Review… | June 4, 2008
Sin Magazine

...has little new going for it beyond a boatload of energy and enthusiasm. And pure formula.

Full Review… | April 22, 2008
Movie Metropolis

Thumbing its nose at music video ho's as sex wallpaper, How She Move's got muscular gritty girl power, as females challenge the greater strength and energy of the male performers on their own turf.

Full Review… | April 19, 2008

The film does have great energy, and some fabulous dancing, but the script could have done with another draft.

Full Review… | April 11, 2008
Sydney Morning Herald

It's a familiar set-up, but while the story falls back on clichés and trite moral messages, a few dance scenes deliver in spectacular style.

Full Review… | April 8, 2008

The dance scenes are fun to watch but the script's not too light on its feet.

Full Review… | April 6, 2008
Empire Magazine

With its trite story the film is never going to impress the average critic, but there is energy and passion that make the film work for its target audience, and the choreography is inventive.

Full Review… | April 5, 2008
Urban Cinefile

Seriously, it is nuts the way these kids dance.

Full Review… | April 3, 2008
Boxoffice Magazine

Disappointing dance drama that suffers from a badly scripted plot, dull performances and poorly choreographed dance routines.

Full Review… | April 3, 2008

The screenplay saddles the characters with too many scenes revolving around tired dialogue, but director Ian Iqbal Rashid compensates by staging the vigorous dance sequences as if his life -- or at least his career -- depended on it.

Full Review… | March 16, 2008
Creative Loafing

How She Move is as lazy about its good intentions as most of the other recent dance dramas that may vaguely come to mind.

Full Review… | February 29, 2008
Let's Not Listen

Newcomer Rutina Wesley brings dynamite physicality and haunted intellect to How She Move.

Full Review… | February 25, 2008
Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL)

Where, oh where, did this beautiful film come from?

Full Review… | February 24, 2008
Quad City Times (Davenport, IA)

It's actually fairly impressive how many cliches the screenwriter can squeeze into the script.

Full Review… | February 11, 2008
Shadows on the Wall

...any misgivings get swept aside whenever the dancing starts, and fortunately, it doesn't stop for long.

Full Review… | February 5, 2008
Sacramento News & Review

The film does the right things well enough that it's a satisfying, if hardly earth-shattering experience.

Full Review… | January 30, 2008
Antagony & Ecstasy

Urban dance drama is formulaic yet entertaining.

Full Review… | January 29, 2008
Common Sense Media

Audience Reviews for How She Move

I was shocked to find out at the end of the movie that it was filmed in Ontario. What do Canadians know about step-dancing? The movie is pretty good. Pretty difficult for the hero to balance relationships, studying for the scholarship and step-dancing.

Red Lats

Super Reviewer


The killer dance moves are quite okay in this choregraphed flick as you know what I really like all-black extraordinary dance film called Stomp the Yard the best. This is much like what break dancing was to the 1980's, but is more of a team sport, with just a few individual moments of solo focus.

Dean McKenna

Super Reviewer

Low-key drama more impressive than most of its steppin', stompin' kin.

William Goss

Super Reviewer

movie was very slow, dancing moves weren't all that explosive, just seemed like a remake of stomp the yard but from a female dancers point of view instead of a guy, very,very similar storyline, but i liked stomp the yard, just didnt want to see it again.

Deb Jarnagin

Super Reviewer

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