2 The mixing
The first time we get to see Efron unleash his crowdpleasers is at the pool party thrown by Reed at his lavish, stereotypical DJ villa and we can't wait to see what skills he's bringing to the table. It's not actually that far off. It's fairly accurate in terms of the skills you'd need to pull off a mix, the only problem is we don't see enough of it.
He adjusts the jog wheel, it cuts to his love interest Sophie, played by Emily Ratajkowski. He applies the filter, back to Ratajkowski. He expertly adjusts the bass in time with the music – wait, now it's just zoomed in on her chest. He mixes it to the drop – ok now it's literally just Ratajkowski jiggling in time to the music. And that's what the main female character of the film is reduced to.
This mixing scene is the result of the expert tuition that Alesso gives Efron's character in the carefully timed promo video leading up to the film's release and these skills are left seemingly redundant. At least they crammed in another cameo, right?
Note Alesso's opening line of the video below, "It's a lot of things to think about to become a DJ." Slightly contradictory of the whole "laptop, one track and a bit of talent" quote, no?
3 The drugs
Now what dance music film would be complete without drugs? With what can only be described as a Molly epidemic sweeping the USA and with causalities at almost every major stateside festival because of the lack of drugs education, we were interested to see how the film tackled this issue.
There are three main scenes in the movie that feature drugs. The first is at a party that Reed and Cole go to and the pair of rockstars trip out on PCP. The screen is awash with colour and fruity visuals. It's actually quite a good scene, aesthetically pleasing and a nice break from the storyline of the film. If anything it makes you want to get involved and get a bit stupid with it.
The second is one of the film's set pieces featuring Efron and Ratajkowski as they attend EDC in Las Vegas. A touchy subject seeing as one person died of an overdose at the festival and over 400 medical phonecalls were made to the authorities over the three day event.
Ratajkowski pops what looks like a pill on Efron's tongue and from there they have the greatest night of their lives. They proceed to run gleefully around the festival before breaking out and continuing to run around Las Vegas. Running through the casinos, running round the streets, running fucking everywhere.
Hang about. If you'd just taken a whole pill at a music festival where nose-bleed EDM was being churned out at every possible juncture we're not sure you'd be running around. You'd be sweating, gurning, gasping for water and not wanting to leave the dancefloor. Instead, the two heartthrobs don't have a hair out of place and are seemingly untouched by the drugs. Must have been shit beans or they're used to popping Molly like aspirin. The below is far more accurate. Big up Human Traffic.
The last drugs scene is at another house party that Carter and his gang throw at their new house. This is a darker, more edgy take on it. Again pills and Molly are being passed round like nobody's business and although one character, Squirrel, appears to have a problem on the night, the party continues.
When they wake up, they find Squirrel dead next to them having suffered an overdose. The film cuts to the funeral and then moves on. Although it may be brief and lacking heart, it does well to highlight the dangers of drug use and if the 18 year-olds going to raves for the first time watch this film, then it's an extreme message that's hammered home. Perhaps some footage showing the friends helping their sick mate or identifying a possible overdose would also be helpful?
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