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Metallica: Through the Never - Blu-ray Review

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Metallica Through the Never

4 stars

Metallica Through the Never might be the best heavy metal concert I’ve never attended.

Filled with explosive performances from a band still hard at work and a catalog of songs that won’t stop its assault on the ears, the 3-D concert is the IMAX experience that you won’t soon forget.  The film is a visual treat for fans.  The mob mentality that guides the film and – strangely enough – is the plot takes a backseat to the actual performance from bassist Robert Trujillo, guitarist Kirk Hammett, drummer Lars Ulrich, and singer James Hetfield.

Metallica Through the Never is a circus – no, a maddening funhouse – of spit and sweat and some face-melting rock n roll as director Nimrod Antal guides viewers through one roadie’s  mission to retrieve something for the band.   Sound simple enough?  It isn’t.  While the band performs their greatest hits, Trip (Dane DeHaan) has the worst day ever: he has a car accident, encounters rioters targeting the police, wanders into a thick forest of hanging bodies, and then his real problems begin.

All of this occurs while the band performs some of the meatiest hooks ever assembled for the screen.  The concert was filmed earlier in the year in Vancouver and Edmonton.  Don’t, however, think that Trip is the only one to face some difficulties.  Part of the fun of the concert experience is in seeing how the band adjusts to broken microphones, people on fire, and a massive blackout which sees them reverting to their club days.

The show, of course, must go on.  That’s the message of the movie.  In spite of the troubles and the naysayers and the massive amount of people against you, the show – being, of course, Metallica – must soldier on.  And with these blistering performances – so loud your ears ring and so visceral you swear sweat slaps your forehead – there’s every reason to believe this band cannot and will not be stopped.  Ever.

The show kicks off with Ennio Morricone’s “The Ecstasy of Gold” and continues on through their hits.   Of course, if we were truly counting, Metallica would have to play their first three albums in their entirety for this performance to truly be one for the ages.  They don’t, of course.  Yes, it’s a good setlist but heavy on emphasizing their more familiar hits. It’s not a sellout, though.  We get “Creeping Death” and “For Whom the Bell Tolls” alongside “Fuel” and “Enter Sandman”.  Of course, it is “Hit the Lights” that seals the deal here.

The events of the film’s plot spiral into the Bizarre and Trip is caught in the middle of it all.  So are we and guess what?!  We don’t care.  The strangeness is never outdone by the earnest performance from the band and they wield thunder and lightning itself on the stage.  The 3-D steadicam riggings are there to spin you completely into the maddening world of theirs.  Uncertain creativity?  How about unstoppable creativity?

Metallica Through the Never is currently in IMAX 3D.  It will be released in in regular theaters on October 4th.  If you are a fan, it should not be missed.

Metallica: Through the NeverMPAA Rating: R for some violent content and language.
Runtime:
94 mins
Director
: Nimród Antal
Writer: Nimród Antal, Kirk Hammett
Cast: Dane DeHaan, James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich
Genre: Music
Tagline:
Metallica: Through the Never
Memorable Movie Quote: "Guys, we're out of time. We have to start the show."
Distributor:
Picturehouse Entertainment
Official Site: www.throughthenevermovie.com
Release Date: September 27, 2013(IMAX)
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
January 28, 2014

Synopsis: Trip, a young roadie for Metallica, is sent on an urgent mission during the band's show. But what seems like a simple assignment turns into a surreal adventure.

Metallica Through the Never

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Available on Blu-ray - January 28, 2014
Screen Formats: 2.40::1
Subtitles
: None
Audio:
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 (48kHz, 24-bit); English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz, 24-bit)
Discs: 50GB Blu-ray Disc; Two-disc set (2 BDs)
Region Encoding: Region-free playback

Entertainment One's two-disc release includes both 3D and 2D versions. I can only imagine what the 3D version looks like because the 2D is pretty damn impressive. The stage, set up to be "in the round", is constantly illuminated with detail and vivid colors. The 2.40:1 1080p transfer has a sense of depth that exceeds expectations. This, coupled with the hard-performances, makes this a visceral experience even at home. The disc's DTS-HD MA 5.1 mix is brutal. CRANK IT UP.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • None

Special Features:

The feature-length documentary that is packed on the release is essential viewing for any fan of the band or the movie. It's honest and shows how the idea came about and what the band were thinking about, during, and after its filming. Metallica, as evidenced here and on Some Kind of Monster, might be one of the most honest bands out there as they are always willing to share their doubts and worries and their music with the fans. There's a trailer, the Master of Puppets music video, film festival Q&A with Metallica, Antal and DeHaan, and a code to download the soundtrack so the rocking never stops.

  • Making of Metallica Through the Never (77 min)
  • Cast & Crew Interviews (10 min)
  • Interviews with the Sound & Music Team (10 min)
  • Mill Valley Film Festival Q&A (29 min)
  • Orion Festival 2013 Film Tent Highlights (53 min)
  • Music Video (9 min)
  • Theatrical Trailer

 

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