JUSTIN BIEBER: NEVER SAY NEVER
Release Date: February 11, 2011
Genre: Documentary/Concert Film
Audience: Young teenagers to adults
Runtime: 105 minutes
Distributor: MTV Films/Paramount Pictures/Viacom
Director: Jon M. Chu
Address Comments To:Sumner Redstone, Chairman/CEO, Viacom
Brad Grey, Chairman/CEO
John Lesher, President, Paramount Film Group
5555 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90038-3197
Phone: (323) 956-5000
NEVER SAY NEVER is Justin Bieber’s first concert film. Also, it explores Justin’s personal journey to a sold out concert in Madison Square Garden last year, within 18 months of his manager, Scooter Braun signing him up and getting him a record contract with the label of pop star Usher Raymond, another pop star who started his career as a young teenage singing sensation.
The documentary shows Justin becoming fascinated, at the tender age of 3, in the Christian musicians at his single mother’s church in Stratford, Ontario in Canada. His mother, Pattie Malletter, bought him a children’s drum set, then a guitar and keyboard. Blessed with a phenomenal voice, Justin began singing and playing. Then, in 2006, when he was 12, Justin came in second at a local singing competition and began performing on the street outside a local theater. His mother posted on YouTube the video of Justin’s competition performance, as well as other videos of Justin singing. Justin’s popularity on YouTube grew exponentially.
Finally, in 2008, former record executive Scooter Braun of Atlanta caught one of Justin’s 2007 music videos online and became obsessed with signing the young phenom to a record contract. He pursued Justin and His mother, who prayed about Scooter before finally agreeing to letting Justin sing up with Scooter and Usher’s record label.
NEVER SAY NEVER documents this story with cute videos of Justin as a child and Justin as a young teenager singing and playing guitar and drums. Intercut with these videos is backstage footage of Justin and his concert team, including several prayers to the Lord. Also included are interviews with Justin’s emotional young fans and, of course, 3D performance footage from the huge Madison Square Garden concert.
NEVER SAY NEVER is an entertaining concert documentary that gives viewers an inside peak at the rots of the Justin Bieber phenomenon. The 3D effects are well done.
Best yet, the movie is not afraid to show the Christian worldview behind Justin, his mother and the team they’ve assembled. Thus, the movie contains several prayers to God, including one “in the name of Jesus.” Also, Justin’s vocal coach makes a comment about the “responsibility” they have toward Justin and his fans.
However, although Justin has recorded one song titled “Pray,” the songs in the movie consist only of the love songs that drive Justin’s young female fans crazy. As with the early careers of Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, the Beatles, Michael Jackson, and other male pop stars, the sight of so many swooning young females, including a few pre-teens, getting so emotional over a celebrity is somewhat disturbing. The movie also has a few light exclamatory profanities and some shots of Justin with his shirt off. MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution, therefore, for older children.
NEVER SAY NEVER is an entertaining movie that gives viewers an inside peak at the roots of the Justin Bieber phenomenon. The 3D effects are well done. Best yet, the movie is not afraid to show the Christian worldview of Justin, his mother and the team they’ve assembled. Thus, there are several prayers to God, including one “in the name of Jesus.” However, Justin sings only romance songs, and the sight of so many swooning young female fans, including pre-teens, getting so emotional is disturbing. The same thing, of course, happened to Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson, and the Beatles.