The closest thing to seeing Metallica in concert, but with a view that you’d never get, even in your wildest dreams, Metallica: Through The Never is the ultimate cinema experience for any Metallica fan. My review after the jump.
Trip (Dane DeHaan) is a roadie for Metallica. Running around after the band and the tour staff, he’s there to do whatever they need. During a massive sold out arena concert, Trip is sent to locate a disabled Metallica truck and retrieve an important item. The job turns out to be far from simple, as Trip discovers anarchy is taking over the streets – gangs riot, people are strung up like puppets by a menacing horseman and fires burn. The show however goes on, and what a show it is. The band play a fan’s dream selection of some of their greatest hits (Enter the Sandman, Battery, Ride the Lightning etc) to the backdrop of an absolutely incredible stage show. Metallica music and a life or death situation with thrilling twists and turns is melded together for a unique music & cinema experience.
As a Metallica fan, Metallica: Through The Never in IMAX 3D was an absolutely incredible experience – from the massive sound through the IMAX speakers, to the incredibly immersive and visually spectacular stage show, it was awesome. This may be the closest I ever get to seeing Metallica in concert, and I think I’m okay with that. The sound quality was remarkable – it was like being there, but without any distortion or imperfection. The sound of the boisterous, loud crowd served to make the concert experience even more real. The large amount of props used during the show was impressive, with huge pieces like an electric chair that shot lightning bolts and a giant “justice” revolving statue used to emphasis the lyrics/meaning in the respective songs they represented. The concert was shot in a way that made the cinema audience feel like they were part of the whole experience – not only did we had the best seats in the house, but we also had overhead and high views which provided a bird’s-eye view of the entire spectacle unfolding in the arena.
It’s surprising how well the Trip’s fictional story meshed together so well with the concert experience. Trip is clearly a massive Metallica fan and is disappointed when he’s sent away from the concert on a job. He jumps in his beat-up van, complete with creepy zombie puppet, cranks the music loud and races off. His surreal journey in the violent streets during the concert was extraordinary cinematic and edited into the concert footage so well. The Metallica music provides the perfect, out-of-this-world soundtrack for such an end-of-days experience. Did Trip really experience the events or were they just his projections of what Metallica music made him feel? Either way, I found Trip’s story just as interesting as the concert – it didn’t take away from the music, it provided a heart-racing accompaniment. DeHaan again proves what a talented actor he is, fully embodying this character and giving us someone to root for. Considering we don’t hear a word from his mouth, it’s an impressive performance.
Metallica: Through The Never is showing for an extremely limited time in cinemas and IMAX. This is a must-see for all Metallica fans and for anyone who wants a head-banging, heart-racing cinema experience.
By Sam McCosh
Director: Nimród Antal
Writer(s): Nimród Antal, Kirk Hammett, James Hetfield, Robert Trujillo, Lars Ulrich
Starring: Dane DeHaan, James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, Robert Trujillo, Kirk Hammett
Runtime: 93 minutes
Release date(s): Australia & New Zealand: October 10 2013