Jonas Brothers: The 3-D Concert ExperienceBy Karen Wilson with Laura Young
MPAA Rating: G
Genre: Musical/Concert Film
DVD Release Date: June 30, 2009
Theatrical Release Date: February 27, 2009
Running Time: 1 hour and 16 minutes
Plot Synopsis: In this docu/concert film, cameras follow the popular teen boy band the Jonas Brothers as they perform a live concert and pop up at promotional events--all the while swarmed by screaming girl fans. The filmmakers also follow them behind the scenes during a day of performing in New York, from an outdoor concert on "Good Morning America" to their sold out show in Madison Square Garden.
Sex/Nudity: Many, many teen girl fans chase after the brothers but never catch them. There is a brief glimpse of bare chest when the boys go back stage for a costume change.
Violence/Gore: None, unless you count the spraying of the screaming fans with pressurized foam aggressive.
Which Kids Will Like It? Based on the thrilled group of tweens in my screening, young girls will be clapping and singing along to the songs, buying commemorative t-shirts in front of the theater, and will be begging their parents to see the morally upright Disney performers and their 3-D entertainment over and over again.
Will Parents Like It? There's not too much in the movie to keep parents entertained--unless they also want to hear live versions of "Burnin' Up" and "That's the Way We Roll." Fortunately, the running time is under an hour and a half.
Special Features: The deluxe extended edition comes in a 3-disc combo pack which includes the movie in 3-D and 2-D on Blu-ray, as well as a standard definition DVD and digital copy. Bonus features include "Get Up Close and Personal", an intimate look at the brothers, two bonus songs, “Love Bug” and “Shelf," and 4 free pairs of 3-D glasses. The 2-disc standard def DVD set incluseds the extended film (in 2-D only), the two bonus songs, and the behind-the-scenes feature.
Kaboose Review: It's 4:30 in the morning and a gigantic African American man wearing a t-shirt that reads "Big Rob's For Real" in shiny block letters is shaking awake the Jonas Brothers in their hotel suite. The boys, Nick, Joe and Kevin, are all up so early because they have a jam-packed day planned in New York City promoting their new album and performing a concert at Madison Square Garden.
Massive 3-D cameras are on hand to capture all of the on-stage and off Jonas goodness for the brothers' new theatrical nonfiction movie, Jonas Brothers: The 3-D Concert Experience. Very short on plot or character exposition, the Jonas Brothers movie is perfect for the super fan who knows every lyric Nick ever wrote and wants to sing along for 75 minutes.
Here are some things you won't learn about the Jonas brothers from their movie: the three boys grew up in New Jersey with an evangelical Christian pastor father, who is now one of their managers. They've been performing since a young age, especially the youngest brother, Nick, who has appeared on Broadway. They really broke out as a band when they appeared with Disney Channel staple Miley Cyrus on her TV show, Hannah Montana, and on her sold out tour. There have also been rumors linking Nick with Miley romantically, and middle brother Joe with singer Taylor Swift but all three wear bands on their ring fingers symbolizing a pledge to stay virgins until marriage.
All of this biographical information is considered a given for viewers of the 3-D Concert Experience, so for those unschooled in Jonas lore it's a little perplexing to watch them swarmed by screaming teen girl fans.
Whatever is so alluring about curly-haired Joe, eye-browed Nick, and side-burned Kevin is never explained to the audience. The filmmakers assume that those watching are already too busy screaming their little lungs out to even care. In this sense, viewers who are not uberfans of the trio are left out in the wild--tasked with figuring out what is so gosh darn fascinating about these talented, albeit mild-mannered young boys--without so much as a point in the right direction.
The movie obviously wants to link Jonas-mania with early '60s Beatles-mania, even including a sequence where the boys watch a clip of A Hard Day's Night and filming a performance of their song "Love Is On Its Way" in Central Park, home of the John Lennon memorial, Strawberry Fields. The brothers also do a lot of running from hordes of screaming, crying teen girls, though the Beatles never escaped from them in a conveniently located rooftop helicopter pad.
Most of these staged interactions between the Jonases and their fans stretch the threads of credulity, like when the visit the Times Square Virgin Megastore on the day of their album release and to each buy a copy of their own CD, which they brandish to the crowds. (Don't they get comps?) Or when the camera "accidentally" goes backstage during a costume change and we get a glimpse of some bare Jonas chests. But the performances of all of their hit songs are spirited, and cameos on stage by fellow Disney star Demi Lovato (who they starred with in Camp Rock) and chart topper Taylor Swift make for fun musical collaboration.
Fans who saw the film in its 3-D form in theaters will naturally gravitate toward viewing the picture with the Blu-Ray 3-D version, however the movie certainly holds up as a glossy-looking concert film in 2-D. The DVD release is notably void of similar special extras that appeared in the home theater release of Disney's other recent 3-D extravaganza, Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds 3-D Concert (which featured the Jonas Brothers as special guests), such as a sing along mode.
Although JoBro lovers will be able to devour a short behind-the-scenese featurette, "Get Up Close and Personal," the segment mainly features footage of the concert rehersal and some promotional events leading up to the tour, so there is not much in the way of juicy tidbits about the three brothers to be gobbled up. Nevertheless, admirers of the trio will be sure to be rewinding and repeating their favorite moments on this DVD for months to come, analyzing ever single moment of this over-the-top concert spectacular.
Directed by: Bruce Hendricks
Cast: Joe Jonas (as himself), Nick Jonas (as himself), Kevin Jonas (as himself), Demi Lovato (as herself), Taylor Swift (as herself), Robert "Big Rob" Feggans (as himself)
Karen Wilson is a freelance writer living in New York City. Laura Young is Crafts/Holidays producer on Kaboose.com