The latest in a long line of documentaries about Justin Bieber shows the singer all grown up and enjoying a period of personal stability and creative productivity.
Justin Bieber: Our World films the behind-the-scenes preparations, starting one month out, for an exclusive New Year's Eve concert in 2020. The chronological sequences are interspersed with scenes from the concert, sometimes in an overlapping way -- for example, showing the rehearsal of choreography with the performance of the same number.
As a historical document, the film will provide one record of Covid's impact on the music industry. Crew and band members repeatedly express gratitude that they have work; the lead choreographer has to quarantine when he tests positive for the virus. The concert itself was set up in such a way that small groups watched live from isolated hotel balconies while the rest of the world streamed the event from home.
The film also captures a new moment in the already well-documented life of the celebrity, often at hand-held distance as he "vlogs" his own preparations for the concert. He's accompanied by his model wife, who, among other things, sees to it that their bedroom is properly humidified to soothe his vocal cords. A slightly odd scene involves Bieber telling his wife a story about putting out a house fire with the mere sound of his singing.
He isn't the only one extolling his virtues. It's surprisingly touching to hear people who've been with the singer for more than a decade talk about his friendship and reflect on his growth. Bieber might sing about being "Lonely," but this film takes pains to show how his relationships have contributed to his music, performances, and life.
Read the full review at Common Sense Media.