6 out of 14 people found the following review useful:
It takes a great star to carry a spectacle this empty. If only
edley from United States
15 February 2012
Musically this is not all terrible. Arrangements are in a spare,
energetic dance club style (I'm sure there's a name for it, but I
wouldn't know) well-suited for giant venues. It's better than many of
these (occasionally awful) songs deserve, and only "Toxic" (a terrific
single) is diminished by this treatment.
To break up the potential monotony there's a dull wraparound story that
will have the viewer wishing for some monotony.
The stage show surrounds Britney with excellent dancers, which has the
unfortunate effect of making Brit look like a well-rehearsed non-dancer
going through the motions but not really caring about what she's doing.
Brit and dancers act out little vignettes during the music, Brit
emerging from a disco speaker, sitting on a cute motorcycle, in a cute
car, and so forth.
Brit does a duet with a videotape of will.i.am where he says he's the
(going from memory) "big fat bass" and Brit says she's the tweeter. I
find myself wondering if this is metaphorical, but find no other
signifiers; then I wonder why I'm wondering.
No musicians are depicted, and the only pretense of this being a live
musical performance is the head-worn wireless microphone. I'm told at
least one song was sung live at each concert if any such performance
was captured here, it was re-dubbed later because Britney's lip-syncing
is unconvincing throughout the show.
Almost any healthy young woman given couple months' rehearsal could do
about as well. Britney comes off entirely blank, the performance
failing to project any personality. It's as if no audience showed up,
but her tyrannical manager/father made her do the show anyway, and she
didn't know it was being recorded.
Aside from liking a couple of her songs, I have few preconceptions
watching this, and found her uninteresting as a singer, performer, sex
object or campy failure. It's hard to ignore this because she's the
focus of the show, making the flashy spectacle seem especially empty.
If you need a comparison, Kylie Minogue whose music is as
occasionally interesting to me as Ms. Spears' pulls all this off
quite well in the two videos I've seen by her, "KylieX2008" and
"Showgirl: The Homecoming Tour". Her shows have the same lip-synced
minimal pretense of live music, with tons of dancing and flashy staging
and costuming and sensational if meaningless imagery, yet the exuberant
Minogue is totally on top of it, where Spears looks drained and lost.
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