One Direction: This Is Us

One Direction

If this year’s Morgan Spurlock “documentary” about UK pop whiz kids One Direction didn’t seem beefy enough or juicy enough or some other adjective that can also be applied to food (cheesy enough? No, there’s no way it could get much cheesier than Spurlock’s glorified and dumbed down commercial for the mega-popular boy band) for your tastes, you just might be in luck. We’ve got two words for you – unauthorized documentary. That’s right, 2013 is the year of One Direction docs, and now a fully unauthorized is prepped to whiz right at your eyeballs, though presumably with less panache than Spurlock’s One Direction: This Is Us. Is it still them? We have no idea, but we know that whatever it is/whoever it is, it will be unauthorized. But what difference will an “unauthorized documentary” have on anything if said unauth-doc sounds just as damn fizzy, light, and silly as the year’s fully authorized outing.

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As a number of box office reports will recognize, this was one of the weirdest weekends ever for new releases. For one thing, a documentary topped the chart for the three-day frame (there’s a chance it won’t win the whole four-day Labor Day weekend, however), and for another thing, a Spanish-language movie in limited release rounded out the top five highest grossing pics. Both of these bettered all other openers, including the action thriller Getaway and the British terrorism thriller Closed Circuit, which debuted Wednesday in a low-end yet still-wide release. It’s certainly the most curious weekend for box office numbers since a Bollywood movie opened in the top ten back in June. The doc at #1 is One Direction: This Is Us, and as far as I’m aware this is only the seventh nonfiction feature to open this high (the others are Fahrenheit 9/11, Michael Jackson: This Is It, Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert Tour and the three Jackass movies — I would maybe count Borat, too, but many people would not), and the first since 2010. To show how bad a weekend this was overall, though, This Is Us debuted at almost half the amount that Justin Bieber: Never Say Never did, but sadly that one was just barely beat (by only a few hundred-k) by the Adam Sandler vehicle Just Go With It. Still, you can bet we’ll continue getting 3D music doc-busters starring the pop act du jour thanks to this distinction, even […]

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dujour

I understand that not a lot of FSR readers are even marginal One Direction fans, let alone “directioners,” so bear with me this week as I offer this list to any who find their way here. Also, if you’re not into 1D and don’t plan to see their new documentary One Direction: This Is Us — even if you normally like Morgan Spurlock‘s films or are a Martin Scorsese completist (he has a cameo) or think it could be a good place to pick up chicks (and not just tweens, as my screening had a number of adult women fans in attendance) — you may discover something of actual value among the selection of films below. The easiest and even most logical way to go with this week’s hottest new movie is to just offer a basic list of the best concert films and tour docs of the past. But really there’s not much there to connect Gimme Shelter (nobody dies at any of the 1D shows) or Woodstock, even though the latter involved Scorsese. There are mostly music movies picked for this list, but they’re specifically relevant and they’re joined by other kinds of films.

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One Direction

Let’s not bury the lede here – attending Morgan Spurlock’s latest film, a Frankenstein’s monster of concert film and cliché-laden personal documentary about Britain’s insanely popular boy band One Direction, solo during its first night of showings is incredibly boring. Perhaps because the excitement among fans wasn’t palatable (most of them were surprisingly sedate, at least until a shirtless 1D-er ambled across the big screen, which happens in Spurlock’s film a lot) or because attendance was low or because it was a school night or even because I am so, so old these days (at least, that’s how I felt), but the experience of attending One Direction: This Is Us at 7PM on a Thursday night in an Upper East Side AMC theater was one of the most flaccid movie-going experiences of my entire life. There weren’t even special edition 3D glasses. I arrive early. Afraid I’ll get a “bad” seat because of a swollen attendance, I walk up to the theater a full half an hour before showtime. It is far too early. Most likely expecting both a larger crowd and a more rowdy one, the theater provides a roped-off area for fans to line up before being admitted into the theater. No one is wearing any One Direction gear, there is only the occasional scream, and the only thing festive is one sad balloon, bobbing above its owner’s pig-tailed head. It’s star-shaped. (The balloon, not its owner’s head.) The teen girls behind me don’t chirp about the film […]

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published: 12.23.2014
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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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