I liked the original Bring It On, but I didn’t think it warranted a sequel – certainly not two of them. The premise is simple: two cheerleading teams from different ethnic backgrounds try to win at some kind of contest to prove who the best is. How it ends up getting that way is perhaps one of the reasons the series even got to All Or Nothing.
In the original, Kirsten Dunst played a cheerleader who took on the role of captain of the squad after the first captain got injured. What Dunst’s character doesn’t realize is that the team's moves were copied from another cheerleading team (led by Gabrielle Union). Now she has to change up the team’s style in order to win a yearly contest for the best squad.
For All Or Nothing, Hayden Panettiere played a cheer captain who had to leave her team when her father’s job forces him to move to another neighborhood. At the new school, she encounters the cheer squad captain (played by Solange Knowles-Smith) who decides to incorporate Panettiere’s character into the team in order for them to win a spot in a music video.
The common theme both movies play on is that white people have no soul and can’t dance, while black people can dance and have all the soul. Black people can’t all dance, but apparently white people don’t know that. For the third outing, All Or Nothing could have easily changed the rules – make the white kids have all the dancing ability, while the blacks don’t. Since they stick with the former, the jokes become more obvious and the performances act more as a face-off between black culture and white culture.
The key to a silly series like this is chemistry, which Dunst and Union had together on screen in the original. Panettiere and Knowles-Smith (who is the sister of Beyonce Knowles) are uninvolved on screen and even act so when they engage in dance numbers, especially towards the end. Even if you didn’t bother with the plot of the excellent West Side Story, they at least appeared to be into the dances they performed.