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: Metallica Through the Never (2013)  ( 1168 )
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« : August 18, 2013, 08:11:36 PM »

Coming to iMax 3D on Sept. 27, and theaters everywhere Oct. 4, is.....

Metallica Through the Never (2013)

Official Movie Website
Trailers and further info available on that site.

You can also periodically check Metallica's website

The movie is written and directed by Nimrod Antal, and stars  stars Dane DeHaan (he was terrific as Ryan Gosling's son in The Place Beyond the Pines) and of course, Metallica members James Hetfield (vocals, rhythm guitar); Lars Ulrich (drums); Kirk Hammett (lead guitar); and Robert Trujillo (bass).
The movie seems to be a hybrid Metallica concert and surrealistic post-apocalyptic movie.

DeHaan plays Trip, a Metallica roadie sent on an urgent mission for the band during a concert. Trip ends up having a surreal adventure, which we see intercut with images of the band in concert.

Metallica filmed a special concert with 24 3D cameras capturing the action. I'm excited to see this in iMax 3D, I suppose it'll feel something like actually being right in middle of a Metallica concert. (I have been to three myself, right on the floor  :) )

The setlist for the concert/movie, filmed over two shows in Edmonton and Vancouver in August 2012, will also be released as a two-disc soundtrack, available Sep. 24. And yes, the first song, as by every Metallica concert, will be The Ecstasy of Gold:

Disc One
The Ecstasy of Gold
Creeping Death
For Whom the Bell Tolls
Ride the Lightning
The Memory Remains
Wherever I May Roam
 ...And Justice for All

Disc Two
Master of Puppets
Nothing Else Matters
Enter Sandman
Hit the Lights

« : August 18, 2013, 08:24:57 PM drinkanddestroy »

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« #1 : August 18, 2013, 08:19:15 PM »

Metallica goes Hollywood for 'Through the Never' movie

Brian Truitt, USA TODAY 3:49 p.m. EDT July 29, 2013

Upcoming hybrid film intersperses live concert footage with a post-apocalyptic narrative.

The songs of Metallica are blistering, dynamic masterpieces of in-your-face musicianship. The messages within them, though? Well, the band would rather have folks headbang their way to a personal interpretation.

And so it goes with the 3-D IMAX hybrid concert/feature film Metallica Through the Never (in theaters Sept. 27), where the heavy-metal rock gods fade to black, Hollywood style, for the first time.

"I get out of (expletive) bed every day for experiences I don't know anything about," says drummer and admitted "movie geek" Lars Ulrich.

Directed by Nimród Antal (Predators),Through the Never intersperses a rockin' show — featuring band members Ulrich, guitarist Kirk Hammett, singer James Hetfield and bass player Robert Trujillo — with a dark fantasy narrative.

The story stars Dane DeHaan (Chronicle) as Trip, a roadie and Metallica acolyte who's sent on a mission and runs right into a seemingly post-apocalyptic situation that includes riots and a gas-masked, horse-riding harvester of sorrow — the Death Dealer.

"Dane has a certain intensity about him on camera that I think really fits the intensity of our music," Hammett says. "Our fans are very, very passionate and intense in their own way, and I'm hoping when they see Dane, they can see themselves."

The band internally discussed doing an IMAX movie for a decade, during which it released the 2004 documentary Some Kind of Monster, which explored the exit of bassist Jason Newsted, Hetfield's visit to rehab for alcohol abuse and the group struggling to stay together.

The idea for a feature stayed on the back burner until about four years ago, when Metallica started hearing pitches from a variety of filmmakers. Of the final four proposals, three were sci-fi flicks and the other was Antal's hybrid.

"Instantly, we thought, 'Uh, we're not going to make a sci-fi movie.' But Nim's concept had more of a Metallica-type feel and it was a better vehicle for our music and songs," Hammett says. "He's seen us live, he knows our music intimately, he gets it."

And when it came to Antal's script, Ulrich adds, "there was a kind of chaotic beauty to it and utter madness."

In addition to having "pretty much the most badass soundtrack a film has ever had," Antal confides that Metallica tracks such as Master of Puppets, Wherever I May Roam,Enter Sandman and One heavily influenced the tonal direction of his story. (A two-disc, 16-song soundtrack album will be released Sept. 24.)

"You don't think of puppies running in fields with flowers when you're dealing with Metallica," he says. "I saw it as a guy where everything is being thrown at him, and he's got to persevere and succeed. Some of those things are pretty dark. It's an emotional thing."

Ulrich was impressed with the fact that Antal's story had great energy but was also ambiguous, a trademark of many of the band's tunes.

There's no dialogue, and the first couple of times DeHaan read the script, he couldn't get a handle on it.

"It's not literal at all," Hammett says.

"We don't like to get up on our soapboxes and talk about what people should think or shouldn't think," Ulrich explains. "Over 30 years, we've tried to encourage people to sort of figure out themselves rather than listen to what Kirk or I say. When people see this film, there'll be some debate as to what's actually going on."

Producer Charlotte Huggins (Journey to the Center of the Earth) was impressed not only by Metallica's raw talent but also the musicians' respect for each other. "If all rock stars are like the guys in Metallica, then this is definitely an industry I'd like to be part of," she says.

The idea of taking a concert film and turning it on its head was the most difficult part of the project as the band paraded it through Hollywood and tried to find creative collaborators, says Ulrich. Everybody wanted to have a point of reference or elevator pitch, he says: "I'm making 'Saving Private Ryan meets Star Trek' or 'Prometheus meets Fight Club' or whatever."

For him, it was easier to say what this movie wasn't. "It's not (Led Zeppelin's) The Song Remains the Same, it's not (Pink Floyd's) The Wall. It's not (The Band's) The Last Waltz. It's not the Katy Perry/Justin Bieber/Britney Spears doc. It's not Some Kind of Monster."

With their Monster documentary, there was a dramatic arc — "Fortunately for the audience and unfortunately for us," Ulrich quips. "The movie worked so much especially for a film audience. There were some people in the music world who were a little taken aback by the transparency of that film."

Through the Never needed to have that narrative from the start, and if they could put that into a music film, it would be something special.

"If people like it, then it's a great thing. But there had to be a story in there of more than four guys playing a rock show and eating sandwiches backstage in a prayer circle. The world doesn't need another movie like that."

Metallica still has a couple of weeks left before finishing the movie. As for their next project, Ulrich thinks 2014 will finally find them back at home in the studio working on their 10th studio album and first since 2008'sDeath Magnetic.

"We may be fresh out of excuses to not make another record," he says.

"I'm sure I can come up with something," Hammett replies with a laugh. "Isn't there any other old established artists we can go out there and make an album with? Is Harry Nilsson still around? What about Harry Chapin?"

Ulrich jokes that they've been procrastinating for a while: "Hey, let's do this instead! Let's make this movie so we don't have to make a new record."

More seriously, he adds, "the reason we do all these projects is to go into an area of discomfort or unknown, go into a place where you don't know exactly what's going on, and theoretically when you go back to music then it reinvigorates you and makes you come back to the studio and say, 'Now we're ready to make a record because we've learned all this stuff!' "

« : August 18, 2013, 08:20:50 PM drinkanddestroy »

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« #2 : October 04, 2013, 12:55:36 AM »

Here's a review of the movie by Sheila O'Malley, who gives it 3.5 out of 4 stars

Sheila O'Malley
September 28, 2013 

Metallica doesn't do anything small. Their songs are relentless assaults of sound, sometimes topping the 8 or 9-minute mark. It's not a surprise then that "Metallica: Through the Never," their 3-D IMAX concert film/apocalyptic Mad Max story, directed by Nimród Antal, is a gigantic spectacle, a virtual-reality experience that is both ridiculous and sublime, sometimes in the same moment.

The band members, lead singer/guitarist James Hetfield, lead guitarist Kirk Hammett, drummer Lars Ulrich, and bassist Robert Trujillo, came up with the concept, giving it a personal stamp which longtime Metallica fans will recognize. The Metallica concert in the film features laser beams, a Tesla coil shooting actual lightning bolts through the air, a gigantic statue of Lady Justice which crumbles to bits around the band members, white crosses emerging from beneath the stage floor, dry ice…the only thing missing from that arena stage is an 18-inch tall Stone Henge. Meanwhile, there's a fictional storyline that runs alongside the concert: a young roadie named Trip (Dane DeHaan) is sent on an important mission to retrieve a bag needed by the band. "Metallica: Through the Never" moves back and forth, from concert to Trip and back.

The concert was filmed at Rexall Place, an arena in Edmonton, Alberta. The stage is huge and cross-shaped, with Lars Ulrich's drum set placed in the transept. The three other guys wander around freely, sometimes meeting up, but mostly facing out, communicating with the masses of gyrating fans. Twenty-four cameras were used, and cinematographer Gyula Pados brings us in close enough that we can almost feel the sweat flying off of Trujillo's long hair as he spins his head, and also pulls us back, way back, to give a sense of the sheer scope of the production and the audience. The fans are packed in tight, pushing against the barriers near the stage, pulsing their arms in the air. The effect of all of this is so visceral and immediate that it really is the next best thing to being there.

Cutting away from the concert to follow Trip's attempt to retrieve the missing bag is a risky device and doesn't work initially, because the concert is so engrossing you resent being made to leave it. But it grew on me as the film progressed, and ended up having a startlingly emotional resonance by the closing shots of the film. Here's what happens. Trip takes off in a battered van to go get this missing bag. Civilization appears to have broken down. Cars are on fire. Riot police and mobs face off. People are strung up from lampposts and dangle in the wind. (There's a reason "Metallica: Through the Never" is rated R.) Trip finds himself singled out by the mob. A literal horseman of the Apocalypse, wielding a gigantic mallet and wearing a gas mask, gallops after him. Trip is beaten up, set on fire, dragged behind a horse, chased through dark alleys. What is in the bag that Metallica needs? Well, if you've seen your Hitchcock, then you know that doesn't matter.

All of these scenes are tied thematically to Metallica's concert song list, which span the 30 years of Metallica's career, from early songs like "Creeping Death," to later songs like "Cyanide." All the major hits are covered: "Master of Puppets," "One," "The Memory Remains," "Enter Sandman," "And Justice For All," "Battery," "Nothing Else Matters." Metallica's music is not light. They are not carefree guys. Even their ballads are gloomy. Trip's struggle to survive in a violent dystopian world is reflective not only of Metallica's most common themes, but also echoes what the music actually sounds like. Metallica's music is fast, aggressive, and demanding. As macho as Metallica's collective stage presence is, what they tap into is a very dark place where they are alone, helpless, and isolated. Music critic Steve Huey once observed that "in one way or another, nearly every song on 'Master of Puppets' deals with the fear of powerlessness." That's where the rage comes from.

Trip, as played by Dane DeHaan, is a skinny kid in black jeans and a hoodie. He is overwhelmed by forces larger than him. He is not physically strong. He is an outcast. James Hetfield may be a tattooed rock god, wearing all black and a bullet belt, stalking around on a stage the size of St. John the Divine like he owns the joint, but he still identifies with guys like Trip. He identifies with the outcasts, the scared kids of the world ("Enter Sandman." their most famous song, features a child's voice praying), and Trip is the stand-in for all kids who feel like they don't fit in, who are scared and feel powerless, who find strength in music like Metallica's. That's when the device stopped feeling like a device and felt like an expression of the band's identification with its own fan base, with the guys they used to be.

It was 1983 when Metallica's first album came out, a year where The Police and Michael Jackson dominated the pop charts. Heavy metal fans were part of a vibrant underground scene, where bootleg cassette tapes were passed around. Metallica are Rock and Roll Hall of Famers now. Their actions (and albums) have not always pleased their hard-core fan base. Remember when they sued Napster? Remember "Load," their sixth album, seen by many fans as a betrayal of what the band was all about? Some of the oldest fans think Metallica sold out with what is known as "the black album." These things are still being argued about on heavy metal websites and fan forums. And then of course, they all went into therapy in order to heal the rifts in their relationships, a process documented in the fascinating 2004 documentary "Some Kind of Monster." The album that resulted from that therapy process, "St. Anger," received mixed reviews but still sold millions of copies. You can see that up-and-down journey in the concert itself, as technical snafus threaten to derail the whole thing, forcing the band to go back to basics.

Some of the best moments in the film involve footage of the concert audience. There is one audience member I keep remembering, and he appears for only a second. He was pushed up against the barrier. He had his shirt off, like a lot of the guys did, and his arms were in the air, eyes closed, lost to everything else but that immediate moment. There are millions more of him around the world. And there were thousands more in that arena. The sound of the audience singing along is so powerful it sounds like a political rally about to turn violent. Even James Hetfield at one point seems a bit taken aback at the collective sound of thousands of people singing his lyrics. At the end of the film, during the credits, the words "To the Metallica Family of Fans" scroll by on the screen. "Metallica: Through the Never" is a vehicle that could reach a new generation of fans, who wouldn't even know what the term "bootleg cassette tape" meant, but know great music when they hear it.

With all of the dazzling special effects "Metallica Through the Never" offers, and with all of the violent encounters poor fictional Trip experiences, it's that shirtless fan, arms raised, that encapsulates what the film is all about, encapsulates what Metallica is all about. To paraphrase one of Metallica's most famous lyrics, that's the memory that remains.

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