Family Movie Night

Movie poster for "Justin Bieber:Never Say Never," Image from IMDb.com

Bieber Fever is about to hit the home theater market when Never Say Never comes out on DVD on Friday May 13th.

The movie, perfect for pre-teens and up, tells Justin’s story of being a kid who recorded his music and put it up for the world to see. We get to see just how hard the kid works and how hard it is to stay a kid in the performance world. As Justin tells his story, he also shares that you should not let your dreams go because others tell you they are impossible.

Now it would be the hip, cool, snarky thing to immediately put down this movie and Justin Beiber as an artist. After all, this guy came about because people saw and liked his You Tube videos. His songs are fairly simplistic but solid workmanship. 

I watched the Glee episode that featured Bieber music and realized that his music may not save the world but it was not completely terrible either. Do the nasty comments come from true criticism or jealousy that this kid worked at his dream and achieved it but the critic has not reached that level of accomplishment?

That is something to think about.

Robert White and Joe Messina in "Standing in the Shadows of Motown," image from IMDb.com.

Now if documentaries about music are something you want to watch, let me suggest one of my favorites. Standing in the Shadows of Motown (2002) tells the story of the studio musicians, the Funk Brothers, at Motown when it was in Detroit. It chronicles not only the members of the band – who did what on which song but also the stories of the time period.

This is just one of the stories. At the start of the Martin Luther King Jr. riots in Detroit, the guys had been playing music all day. When they leave the studio they realize very quickly what is going on and the Funk Brothers hide their white horn player so that he can remain safe.

The soundtrack is filled with the memorable songs of the era that still sound so wonderful to my ear. How the opening lick for My Girl came into being is discussed and credit to the man who came up with it. It is a movie that will send adults on a reminiscing trip and give a lesson to those not affected to Motown music.

Movie Poster for "This is Spinal Tap," Image from IMDb.com

The mocumentary that does the best at laughing at the self-absorbed world of superstardom is This Is Spinal Tap (1984). Directed by Rob Reiner who stars as a documentary-like interviewer, this is the movie that gave us the joke about ’11’ on an amp volume dial. This movie made fun of guitar collecting and searching for enlightenment through Eastern meditation. It skewers everything we think we know about that world and then some.

Would I show this movie to my kids? Because it has a lot of swearing, drugs and alcohol references and some sexual jokes, I would allow my older teenager watch it and I am pretty sure the 14-year-old will quietly come in the room and watch. The younger ones are just going to have to wait a few years before they see it.

Until next week, see you in the rental aisle.

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