Like the Jonas Brothers, Justin Bieber and Katy Perry before them, wildly successful British boy band One Direction gives voracious fans another reason to squeal excitedly with the slick concert documentary “One Direction: This Is Us.”
Unlike “Katy Perry: Part of Me,” last year's relentlessly boring installment in this firmly established trend, “This Is Us” is packed with nonstop energy and cheeky good fun, courtesy of its likable young leads: Niall Horan, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson.
“Super Size Me” documentarian Morgan Spurlock directs the proceedings with stylish flair, but he's not interested in stirring up controversy with his “docbuster.”
“This Is Us” features the expected concert clips, backstage antics and behind-the-scenes interviews, but Spurlock skips the “Behind the Music”-style delving into back stories and personal dramas already hashed out in the tabloids (which means any mention of Harry's famous ex-girlfriend Taylor Swift has been carefully excised).
“This Is Us” is meant to give the fans what they want (the tween and teenage girls at a recent Oklahoma City screening screamed the entire 92 minutes like they were at a concert) and build on the mighty One Direction brand (Spurlock is a master cinematic salesman, although he doesn't actually appear on-screen this time).
Spurlock does explore what makes the “X Factor” contenders so darn popular, and he comes to the conclusion that the 1D guys are just ordinary, likable blokes who sing well but dance horribly, maintain their blue-collar work ethic and spike their clean-cut image with just enough shirtless-and-tattooed rebel edge to make them extra appealing to their adolescent fan base.
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