The Old Adage is True: Never Say Never
I'm a Belieber?*
I am nothing if not cynical. And I’m especially cynical about pop music – I have no need for it. I roll my eyes and pretend it doesn’t exist, shutting my ears to it. When invited by friends to see the Justin Bieber movie on opening night there was no question – I would absolutely not be wasting money on that 3D propaganda piece and subjecting my eardrums to toxic overproduced bubblegum noise, even if it warranted a laugh or two. Because Bieber is a sure-fire sign of the impending apocalypse, right? But the event evolved into a girl’s night out, a tongue-in-cheek outing replete with homemade Bieber t-shirts and party games, so I decided to loosen up and give it a whirl. If nothing else I would have dinner, a story and a laugh.
Apparently the joke was on me – because somehow, some way, Bieber warmed my cold, cold heart. Maybe (probably) it brought out the 10-year-old teenybopper in me, maybe it was subliminal messaging or drugs in my soda, but I shockingly found myself utterly engaged and actually HAVING FUN. It helped that the audience behaved as if they were at an actual Bieber concert, screaming, dancing in the aisles, booing Miley Cyrus. There was a lot of communal joy. And I have to give credit – I can’t believe I’m saying it, but the kid actually has talent – and not just vocally. The videos of a tiny self-taught Bieber drumming like a pro took me by surprise. How could you not find this kid at least mildly charming?
I mean come on!
The movie itself is the expected puff piece, although surprisingly “talking heads” in nature. It’s no masterpiece but it truly reflects this moment in time. Sometimes you have to lighten up and go with the flow. It’s escapism, and it exists for a reason. It makes these young girls (and occasional boy) happy – and gives them hope, something I could use more than a little of these days. I get it now.
Film critic Owen Gleiberman gets it, too.
How many words can you make out of the letters in Bieber’s name?
Bieber Fever is catching.
I ask you, can anything that makes this little girl so happy be bad? No it cannot!
Fun lesson learned: If you ask to take someone’s picture while they hold up a photo of Justin Bieber, they will do it, no questions asked! And they will like it.
*Belieber: “A person who loves Justin Bieber & beliebes in everything that he can do.”