One Direction: This Is Us - Review
Review by Rob Carnevale
WHEN Morgan Spurlock was first announced as director of a documentary on One Direction hopes were raised that the resulting film may have been a little more probing.
Alas, One Direction: This Is Us is strictly for the fans. By Spurlock’s own admission, it’s the type of film that is designed to make you like Harry Styles and company no matter what you thought of them before going in.
As such, it’s roughly divided into 30 minutes of 3D enhanced concert footage and 60 minutes of behind-the-scenes glimpses of the band at play or hanging around with loved ones.
Very little lip service is paid to the hardships of coping with fame at such a young age, while anything controversial (such as the sometimes obsessive behaviour of fans) is ignored completely.
Spurlock doesn’t even dare pose the question of how a group of amiable singers could have enjoyed more success than The Beatles at this stage of their careers without being able to play an instrument (save for one acoustic strum-along with Niall) or write any of their own material.
And to be fair, coming from a director whose past credits include taking a bite out of the fast food industry with Super Size Me and searching for Osama Bin Laden that is disappointing.
Instead, we get scenes of Zayn Malik buying his mum a house, fans mobbing them while on a shopping trip in Amsterdam, pranks involving dressing up to fool the fans, fishing and camping time outs that often look staged and flashy visuals to enhance the concert footage (from using graphics to dress the boys up as comic book heroes to space invaders flying at you from the stage).
There’s even an obligatory interview with Simon Cowell (the X Factor creator who first rejected them and then saw their talent) and gushing celebrity cameos from the likes of Chris Rock and, yes you’re about to read this right, Martin Scorsese.
The overall result is exceedingly shallow yet somehow enjoyable in the most superficial of ways.
Running time: 93mins
UK Release Date: August 29, 2013