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Times of India
A chronicle about life both on and off the road of the biggest boy band around today, this documentary combines concert footage with the stories of One Direction's rise to fame
The idea behind this film follows a now-familiar trend. A group tastes almost instant success, the money rolls in and a little while later comes a movie for the fans to lap up while the band's still hot.
Only this time, it's a bit odd that Morgan Spurlock (of
fame), who has a reputation for his critical views about various aspects of popular culture, was roped in to document this saccharine-sweet group's super-sized success.
One Direction (put together by Simon Cowell) is probably the only group that was buoyed to fame thanks to their Twitter following. While they aren't exceptional dancers or song-writers, what they can do quite well is to harmonize nicely with each other's voices. While the behind-the-scenes footage gives fans a window into their off-stage personalities, their banter about the nature of fame is lengthy and the film does not devote enough time to their singing prowess, which is what they're best at.
Although they are shown performing in stadiums (most of their hits, including What Makes You Beautiful and Live While We're Young) from Tokyo to Mexico City, the film focuses on the peripherals such as the joking around, interspersed with sentimental situations, like Zayn buying his parents a new home and getting teary-eyed. They visit their old employers and appear - at least on camera - not to take their success too seriously. The next step would be for Spurlock to place halos above their heads.
Zayn, Niall, Liam, Harry and Louis are talented guys no doubt and so, the film had potential. Spurlock could have painted a truly gripping, well-rounded picture of a band touring exhaustively - the good along with the temper flares, egos, insecurities that make them human rather than showing them as saints.
What we get instead is just another staged performance.