Film: Justin Bieber: Never Say Never 3D
Is Bieber Fever catching? Maybe. But only ever so slightly.
Let’s get this out of the way. We are not Justin Bieber fans. In fact the very thought of having ‘Baby’ ringing round our heads for a whole day just about drives us round the bend. So when we heard that The Biebster was bringing out a film about his rise to fame, we weren’t exactly chomping at the bit for a seat at the cinema. But, believe it or not, Never Say Never IS NOT BAD. Really. In fact, it’s actually a little bit good.
The main reason for this is that the film is not strictly about the 16-year-old. Focusing on the timely and unusual way in which Bieber rose to fame (via YouTube), director Jon Chu (Step Up 2 and 3D ) mixes 3D concert footage and interviews with his family and the team around him as they all work towards ‘the dream’: for Bieber to play to a full house at New York’s Madison Square Garden venue. It’s a tenuous ‘plot’ but it helps move things along, even if the concert sections do tend to drag. But try telling that to the gaggles of die-hard fans.
Never Say Never has arrived at cinemas at a good time. Not only is it a really clever marketing technique at the beginning of Bieber’s pop career (our stubborn opinion of the fella, for one, has partially shifted after watching it) but it’s also come at a time when film is going mad for the power of new media. The Social Network is tipped for the Best Picture Oscar on Sunday, Catfish has had widespread critical acclaim and Chatroom, well, the less said about that one, the better but you get the point. And Chu hammers home this unique story of global success through the web, making the often told rags-to-riches tale a hell of a lot more engaging.
Using archive footage to show that Mini Biebs isn’t just a born and bred Disney kid, we see him clambering over Grandad, banging his very first drum kit, and starring in those YouTube vids which helped him get to where he is now. Of course, we also get Bieber in the present, split between manic touring and running around in his hometown like a normo, dampening that cocky image portrayed in the media.
We also get an insight into the world infected with Bieber Fever. Interviews with hysterical fans imply that every young girl is adamant that they will, in fact, become the the sweepy-haired one’s wife and that seeing him in concert is enough to bring anyone to tears. To be honest, we thought we’d cry during this film too.
Surprisingly though, once we got over the lengthy musical interludes, we quite enjoyed Never Say Never. Chu brings breathes life into something that many will have little interest in, switching between past and present and revelling in the unusual journey one artist has taken.
There aren’t any real surprises but Never Say Never is a good intro into the world of Bieber and there’s more than enough crooning action to make the fans swoon. Oh, and the 3D feature isn’t half bad either.
Read out interview with Justin Bieber here.