One Direction: This is us
If you are expecting to know more about the backstage life of the band, you might feel disappointed at the end of the screening. This film is more about filming the boys’ performances on stage and showing the fans’ screaming support than finding out what happens when the spotlights get off.
If you’ve seen the trailer for “One Direction: This is us” or even watched the press conference, you know that this film was basically a promise to see the behind the scenes of the biggest boyband in the world’s tour “Take Me Home”. Well, it is not really what you will get to see… It would have been amazing if this was just a filmed concert because Morgan Spurlock (well known as the guy who almost killed himself by eating exclusively McDonalds meals for a whole month) captured the energy and all the fun One Direction has on stage. They jump around, dance, blow kisses and wave at the crowd while singing and assuring a great show. The film, apart from all the performances, mostly shows fans; screaming, crying, explaining how much they love the boys and how much, if they, as fans, change the boys’ lives, the band has changed theirs.
You do see a bit of their lives in between shows: travelling from country to country, sleeping on floors and tour buses and a bit of their hometowns. Harry happily goes back to the bakery for an extra shift and a bit of butt pinching (lucky Barbara! ), Niall is seen cheering to a football match and as his broher’s best man. The most moving part is probably when Liam’s dad says he would like to spend more time with his somewhat estranged son. It is crushing to realize their families have barely seen them since they went for their X Factor auditions…
There is also something wrong about how much pressure these boys are under. They are exhausted, homesick, yet they have to go on and tour for 8 months, assuring a gig almost every night, always to a different place. Despite all the hard work and tiredness, they’re happy chaps, always pointing out that they feel like brothers. And it is probably thanks to their tight bond that they can go through so much madness and stay grounded and normal lads.
Since Spurlock made the engaged and message-conveying “Super Size Me”, it would have been so much bigger and controversial if he had made a documentary questioning One Direction’s management and their gestion of the boys’ career.
In a way, it is a good thing that “This is Us” kinda missed its goal: whatever happens backstage is probably the few last private instants that Liam, Niall, Zayn, Harry and Louis have left.
Let’s leave them that…