In Glee: The 3D Concert Movie the cast of Glee give a live concert for throngs of screaming fans, show life backstage, and some of the fans explain what Glee means to them. Glee: The 3D Concert Movie is a heartfelt, head-bobbing, toe-tapping good time.
Glee: The 3D Concert Movie is split into three different parts; the concert, the fans, and backstage. The concert covers the songs featured in the show. The backstage aspect is shot not as actors or singers getting ready for the concert but the characters from the show getting ready. The fans are split into exclusively concert goers and people whose lives have been touched by the show, a small person who considers herself a real life Cheerio (the cheerleading squad on the show Glee), the gay kid who was mercilessly outed, and a young woman with Asperger Syndrome. The fans kick off the movie, and are spliced between different songs in the concert, as are the back stage vignettes.
The concert is a humongous, first class production. There are multiple stages, some with multiple levels. There is no shortage of audience interaction. The singing is of varying quality. For those familiar with the show, this will be no surprise but if you are not familiar, it may be a bit disappointing.
I appreciated greatly the outstanding dance choreography throughout the concert, even when the cast’s dancing was not so good. I was impressed how seamlessly the choreographers incorporated Artie’s (Kevin McHale) wheel chair without making him or the chair into a prop – a tempting but fatal mistake of many dance numbers. I did however feel bad for some of the background dancers because they had to wear some truly ridiculous costumes which do look good for the concert but would be hard for me to take myself seriously wearing. For example, during the song Slave for You, some of the dancers look like they skinned and wore a Muppet. Poor Animal.
The backstage scenes were silly entertaining. Not all of the characters are featured backstage but the ones that are do not resist the temptation to go a bit overboard. For example, there are little fights between characters, and talk of how great boobs will look in 3D.
On that subject, the 3D does not add much to the movie. I think it would have been equally fun without it.
The thing that made Glee: The 3D Concert Movie more than just a videotaped concert (yuck) was the stories of the people affected by the show Glee. The people seem comical at first but as the stories progress, it becomes obvious that they are not to be seen as pathetic but empowered by an unconventional method. They add a certain context to the audience in the movie as well as the theater where I was sitting.
All around me people in the theater people were cheering, speaking out loud to their favorite characters, swooning, and singing along with the songs. At one point, I was convinced we were having an earthquake (a bit of a disconcerting feeling on the third floor of a huge building in San Francisco) because everyone ways swaying in their chairs, bouncing up and down a little.
I shamelessly confess that I was guilty of being one of those sway bouncers. I think more than once I could have been caught with my mouth open, leaning forward a little bit, entranced by the movie.
My one big complaint about Glee: The 3D Concert Movie is that you have to be familiar with the show in order to get anything out of it. One who has not seen the show or stayed current with the show will be hard to follow what is happening or who is on screen or find any reason to invest in it at all. I went with a friend who has not watched this season and she asked me repeatedly the name and story of the characters which told me that there is too much homework required to justify the price of the ticket, especially the increased cost that theaters charge for 3D tickets. Glee: The 3D Concert Movie is certainly not for people who have never seen Glee or hate the show.
Gleeks should not miss it and people who love Gleeks will surely gain brownie points for taking them to see it. Glee: The 3D Concert Movie is a splendiferous, entertaining wonderama.