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Coldplay Live 2012 (2012)

Video  |  Music  |  19 November 2012 (UK)
8.7
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A visually exciting original concert special that captures the band in the midst of its biggest world tour yet, in support of the hit albumMylo Xyloto. In HD.

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A visually exciting original concert special that captures the band in the midst of its biggest world tour yet, in support of the hit albumMylo Xyloto. In HD.

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"Is there anybody out there?"
16 December 2012 | by (Ireland) – See all my reviews

On June 25th 2011, Coldplay returned to the festival circuit with a stint on Glastonbury's Pyramid Stage. Slotted in-between the much- anticipated (and overdue) U2 and reigning pop queen Beyonce, the Devon boys were the mainstage act people were least excited about. But to everyone's surprise, they delivered the defining Glasto performance of 2011, with Noel Gallagher remarking that they'd "ripped the **** out of Glastonbury". About two weeks later, as NASA's space shuttle Atlantis continued on its final mission over 200 miles above Earth, its crew members were awoken not by the voice of Mission Control, but by Coldplay's massive hit 'Viva La Vida'; essentially rendering them the biggest band on and beyond our world, because there's no denying how huge Coldplay have become. But as Chris Martin outlines in one of the film's five intermissions, when you reach that pinnacle of commercial success people like to bring you down, yet despite that the band "don't really give a ****", because they relish the feeling of playing in front of "20,000 people... on a daily basis".

This is clear to see in the film's live footage, as from the moment Martin lays his fingers on the piano kicking a Parisian gig off, the chemistry between the band members is rather beautiful to watch. Throughout, it appears as if everyone in attendance is having the time of their lives watching Coldplay having the time of their lives. Chris Martin springs about the stage like an eight year-old that's had too many Skittles, Jonny Buckland's guitar riffs sparkle like stars, Will Champion powerfully pounds the drums whilst also providing backing vocals, most effective and quite touching during an 'intimate' rendering of 'Us Against the World' and Guy Berryman allows his bass guitar to do the talking, remaining something of a beating-heart within the group. Giving this documentary distinction from most concert films today, a number of intermissions provide a insightful peek behind-the-curtains, with each band member discussing various elements of the tour, giving their perspectives of these and how they evolved and how they try to keep a constant connection with the audience, even in a venue as large as the Stade de France. This personal bond with the fans is something vital to Coldplay's live shows, separating them from practically all other arena rock bands out there today, making everyone in the audience feel like they're part of the show. Best seen when, after performing 'Charlie Brown', Guy Berryman takes a moment to stand back and appreciate the awe-inspiring sight of over 80,000 twinkling wristbands before them.

The film also succeeds on a technical level, with great sound design and audio mixing, and cinematography that effectively captures the feeling of experiencing a band like this live, without ever relying too heavily on frantic camera-work and shaky-cam as many have in the past. However, an unexpected use of slo-mo during 'In My Place' unfortunately jars with and somewhat dilutes the energy of the performance.

Over the course of footage from Paris, Spain, Montreal and of course, Glastonbury, fans are treated to a great tracklist, complete with upbeat crowdpleasers ('Viva La Vida', 'Paradise') and surprisingly emotional moments ('Up in Flames', 'Us Against the World'). Will this film covert the many naysayers? Probably not, but will it please the fans? Undoubtedly. It cements Coldplay's position as the today's kings of stadium rock, showing us a band at the top of their game always driven to go the extra mile for their fans (just look at all those wristbands!).


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