METALLICA Movie Review
At first, the idea of another concert movie from Metallica seems redundant. Didn’t they just release Quebec Magnetic last year! Why? Why not a movie of the Big 4 concerts with Megadeth, Slayer, Anthrax & Metallica? Why not a movie of the weeklong set of anniversary concerts in Frisco when every single member and contributor, past and present, joined them onstage. There are probably a lot of legal and technical reasons that we’ll never see that stuff, but do we really need another concert movie with Master of Puppets & Sandman? The answer is NO. No we don’t. Somehow, with Through The Never, it’s different....and MUCH BETTER.
Through The Never is a movie within a movie. The scenes switch back and forth between a Metallica concert and a story about one of the band’s roadies. Trip is sent out to find one of the band’s trucks that broken down in the city and to bring back something in the truck that the Metallica boys want for after their show. He sets out in a van into the abandoned streets and encounters fear and anarchy and something that looks and feels like the Apocalyse. It’s not unfamiliar and plays out like any comic book movie that has come out in the last 5 years. Metallica aren’t superheroes so Through The Never draws on the many themes and images drawn from Metallica’s song and album catalogue. The good news is that it isn’t cheesy. It’s very cool and some of images are very striking and would be amazing for the cover art for the next Metallica album.
The storyline of Trip the roadie plays out while Metallica are in concert back at the arena. The concert footage of the movie makes up for about two thirds of the total 90 minutes. What sets this Metallica concert movie apart from all the other ones is the impeccable sound and up-close camera shots. If you never understood what all the fuss is all about, new fans will get a solid dose of HEAVY and die-hards get a chance to sit behind Lars’ drums, get up close Kirk’s fret work, Hetfield’s machine-gun riffin’ and connect-the-dots on James’ tattoos. This concert also might be one of the best staged Metallica concerts ever with a mix of new high tech effects and classic Metallica stage props
As awesome as the stage set is and the way the band command it - it was the music that won me over. It draws mostly from the first five Metallica albums (the “crown jewels”). No matter how familiar to long time fans, there is still something about a Metallica set that starts with “Creeping Death” & “For Whom The Bell Tolls” or “Master of Puppets” into “Battery”. Fast, Hard, Unrelenting. Exactly what they built their rep on. Set those songs as the backing music to the impending apocalypse in the other portion of the movie and you’ve got something very powerful that the movie divisions of Marvel or DC Comics can never match.
See Through The Never in IMAX-3D – the usual format won’t cut it. AND stay in your seat for the film credits at the end. While Metallica perform “Orion” - that “something in the truck”, the roadie first set out to recover, emerges. I won’t spoil it for you, but think Se7en.
Through The Never comes out in IMAX-3D in selected theatres on September 27th in wide release a week later. The 2 cd soundtrack album comes out September 24th.
CLICK HERE to visit the movie’s website.