JONAS BROTHERS: THE 3D CONCERT EXPERIENCE
* (out of 5)
February 27, 2009
Joe Jonas as HIMSELF
Kevin Jonas as HIMSELF
Nick Jonas as HIMSELF
Directed by: Bruce Hendricks
BY KEVIN CARR
Girls are crazy.
I don’t mean they’re mildly emotional or excitable. I mean completely nuts. Utterly psychotic.
At least the girls flocking to see the new 3D Jonas Brothers movie are.
Even though the run time is less than a standard theatrical release, the tickets to “Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience” are several bucks more than that of even the inflated 3D ticket prices. I suppose this is because the studio and the theaters consider this to be closer to a concert than an actual movie.
And I suppose that this film’s experience is just like being at a Jonas Brothers concert. The girls in the audience scream every single time one of the JoBros looks at the camera. They squeal throughout the musical numbers. And they even reach out their hands like the minions of adoring fans in the movie.
The experience of seeing “Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience” in the theaters with dozens of screaming adolescent girls bordered on a science fiction movie. The film is definitely immersive, giving you a closer look at a Jonas Brothers concert than 99 percent of the girls that see the live show. With the amazing RealD technology, you’re close enough to the guys on stage that you can almost feel the sweat from Joe Jonas’s brow.
But it’s all an illusion. The Jonas Brothers can’t see you. They can’t hear you when you shout, “I love you, Joe!” from the back of the theaters. They don’t see the signs that say, “I love the Jonas Brothers!” that are scattered through the seats. It’s not a real concert, but the girls in the audience don’t seem to notice.
Virtual reality has reached a new height with these Disney pop concerts, affording parents a cheaper way for their tweens to see their favorite stars live on stage. The experience is surreal, but for a screaming tween girl, it’s a religious event.
After last year’s uber-successful “Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert in 3D” tore through the box office in only 600-odd digital theaters, Disney took their next group of wholesome teen rock stars and gave them their own film. Playing in almost twice as many theaters, but failing to pre-sell out like the Hannah Montana flick did, “Jonas Brother: The 3D Concert Experience” still is set to make plenty of cash.
The movie is a compilation of songs from the JoBros’ “Burning Up” concert tour, with several interstitials with the brothers behind the scenes. The movie opens with an homage to “A Hard Day’s Night” as the Jonas Brothers run through New York City chased by legions of screaming fans. This opening, while cute, led me to think of the horrors of what might happen if the girls actually caught the famous brothers. I suspect it would be as bloody and horrific as when a greyhound actually catches the rabbit during a dog race.
In comparison the Hannah Montana film from last year, the interstitial moments were more throwaway montages than anything interesting about the kids. In the Hannah Montana film, you actually got a sense of what it was like to be with Miley Cyrus on set, during rehearsals and even visiting her home. The Jonas Brothers, who apparently have less charisma than Cyrus, are seen being shepherded to numerous publicity points and eating breakfast.
When it comes to the 3D gimmicks, this movie does work very well. The concert effects – including explosions, fireworks and numerous musical instruments flying at the screen – are integrated better than they were in the Hannah Montana flick.
Ultimately though, there is no pragmatic reason to review this film and recommend it or not to anyone. If you don’t like the Jonas Brothers or won’t like this film, you get everything you deserve by going. There are no surprises here.
Tweens will love it. Parents will tolerate it to make their kids happy. It’s that simple.