Stomp the Yard

  • Directors: Sylvain White
  • Producers: Will Packer, Rob Hardy
  • Writers: Robert Adetuyi, Gregory Anderson
  • Genres: Drama, Musical, Romance
  • Actors: Columbus Short, Meagan Good, Ne Yo, Darrin Henson, Chris Brown, Brian White, Laz Alonso, Valerie Pettiford, Harry Lennix

DJ Williams (Columbus Short) is a krump dancer in inner-city Los Angeles. He and his younger brother Duron (Chris Brown) compete in local dance competitions as members of a crew known as the “Goon Squad”. During the battle there are backs and forths, but in the end of the battle the Goon Squad win a cash-prize, and the losing home crew responds by ambushing DJ and his crewmates after the show. A fight breaks out, and when the leader of the rival crew starts beating up DJ, Duron pushes him away and starts fighting him, leading the rival to pull out a gun and shoot Duron, killing him.

Arrested for assault, DJ is subsequently sent by his mother to live with his aunt Jackie (Valerie Pettiford) and uncle Nate (Harry J. Lennix) in Atlanta, Georgia, where he is to attend historically black Truth University. Nate, the physical plant director at Truth, aims to teach DJ responsibility, and puts the boy to work doing maintenance as part of a work-study program.

While waiting in the line to register for classes, DJ sees a fellow student named April Palmer (Meagan Good), to whom he is immediately attracted. After registration, he moves into his dorm room, where he meets his new roommate Rich Brown (Ne-Yo). Rich meets DJ at a stepping competition on the green between the Truth chapters of rival fraternities Theta Nu Theta and Mu Gamma Xi. The Mu Gamma Xi crew, seven-time national stepping champions, easily steals the show until DJ sees April across the way and runs right through the Gammas’ step line in an attempt to speak to her. A fight nearly breaks out between the freshman and the Gamma steppers, whose best stepper Grant (Darrin Henson), is April’s boyfriend.

A quote of Martin Luther King appeared just before the credits. “Intelligence plus character. That is the goal of true education.”

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