Reviewed by Ian Forbes, Sobering Conclusion
Truth in advertising. That’s what you’re going to mostly get with Glee: The 3D Concert Movie. It features the cast of the TV show Glee and it’s a concert movie … but the 3D part is where things go horribly awry.
First off, huge chunks of the film are completely 2D. Even the individual elements converted over to 3D do little to provide any real depth, as the most noticeable effect comes from the singers thrusting the mic towards the audience. And as for anything approaching what passes for standard 3D these days (don’t get me started), one must wait until the end credits start for the third dimension to begin … as CGI slushies splash over people’s names … wow … super … so glad they’re charging people extra money for this privilege.
When not wondering why I even bothered to put on the 3D glasses in the first place, I did enjoy the concert footage. Of course, it helps that I watch Glee and enjoy the talented singers and dancers. The song lineup consists of many of the most popular renditions from the show and each key cast member gets a spotlight in the film (though Dianna Agron and Jenna Ushkowitz must have pissed somebody off because they get the least attention).
However, in lieu of talking with the cast and using those segments as interstitials between songs, director Kevin Tancharoen decided to look at the obstacles three fans have overcome thanks in some part to the message of the show. There’s a high school dwarf cheerleader with aspirations of becoming Prom Princess, a girl with Asperger’s whose love of Glee helps her deal with social anxiety, and a gay teen who was outed in junior high by the guy he had a crush on. It’s wonderful that the show could positively affect these kids but stopping the high energy performances for peeks into their lives ruined the flow of things. Plus, what fans really want is to learn more about the cast and what they think of the show. Going away from that makes no sense.
And while the performances are great and mostly make up for the shortcomings of the filmmaking aspects, it’s just not possible to give the film that much credit. You don’t need to do much with a stage show being brought to the screen, and neglecting to do more with the cast while spotlighting three fans (no matter how poignant their stories are) simply reeks of laziness. For every issue that existed with the Justin Bieber concert movie, at least it knew that people wanted to learn more about its star and made sure to include loads of behind the scenes footage. This is little more than a cash grab that fans will eat up but won’t do anything to bring someone new into the picture.
So for anyone out there who couldn’t make the live performances or simply wants another taste, Glee: The
3D Concert Movie is fun … enough. It’s just a shame there isn’t the option to see this in 2D, since that’s how the film is being presented anyway and those extra few bucks would be better spent at the concession stand.
Glee: The 3D Concert Movie hits theaters on August 112, 2011 and is rated PG for thematic elements, brief language and some sensuality.
More on Glee: The 3D Concert Movie:
– Photo gallery
– Premiere photos
– Cast list and resources