REVIEW: METALLICA - THROUGH THE NEVER / CERT: 15 / DIRECTOR: NIMROD ANTAL / STARRING: DANE DEHAAN, JAMES HETFIELD, LARS ULRICH, KIRK HAMMET, ROBERT TRUJILLO / RELEASE DATE : OUT NOW
It’s safe to say that Metallica have pretty much taken over the world of rock at this stage. The mega-famous rock band have come a long way from their garage tape days and have now become a global brand, with all the attendant recognition and money that implies. A big budget movie seems inevitable. However, rather than going for a narrative with interwoven songs (similar to Mama Mia) we get a rock concert with some live action scenes between songs.
The main problem is that Through The Never can’t really decide what it is. On the one hand we have some excellently shot and directed footage of a Metallica concert. One the other we have a silly post-apocalyptic fantasy movie that barely makes sense. The two features have been stuck together with gaffer tape, so much so that the viewer can easily see the join.
The rock concert part of the movie is entirely fine. It’s a bunch of sweaty old men who happen to have a lot of skill and talent putting on a rock concert. Metallica are super famous for a very good reason and their stage presence is tangible even through all the gloss. All the songs you’d expect from a greatest hits collection can found here and it’s a thoroughly enjoyable spectacle, provided that you like that sort of thing.
Alas, we have to rate this on its genre credentials and that’s where Through The Never fails. The movie part of this feature is a shaggy dog story about a young courier who has to retrieve something valuable to the band. They boy then has to fend off mysterious supernatural forces and survive all sorts of horrors in order to deliver his package. It’s well produced with extremely well done special effects but doesn’t really go anywhere. Because the concert doesn’t really tie-in with the action except at the very beginning and very end it feels like we’re watching two unrelated movies.
Rock fans looking for a Metallica fix will find this entertaining, but if you’re after some sort of genre movie with a heavy metal twist then this isn’t for you.