The Jonas Brothers are the hottest boy band in America.
With a large legion of fans, the group which consists of brothers Kevin, Joe and Nick, the Jonas Brothers have accomplished many things in their last three years since the release of their first album.
The group debuted on Columbia Records INO Records (a Christian Label) in 2006 and eventually received airplay on Nickelodeon's "Zoey 101: Spring Break-Up" and various Disney soundtrack and compilations. Despite the group starting to gain momentum, the group was dropped by Columbia Records and had no label until signing with Hollywood Records in 2007. And received more attention when they appeared on an episode of "Hannah Montana" and the group were playing at major televised events.
But it was until the group released their third album "A Little Bit Longer" in 2008 which gained mainstream attention (and #40 on Rolling Stone Magazine's top 50 albums in the US) and the group had their own Disney film "Camp Rock" which featured the trio with another upcoming Disney Channel starlet Demi Lovato. The group also received the spotlight on the front cover of Rolling Stone Magazine.
Needless to say, the Jonas Brothers have become popular and Disney began filming their concert tour in the Summer of 2008, preparing the film for a 3D release and starring both popular actress/pop star Demi Lovato and popular country singer Taylor Swift.
"JONAS BROTHERS - THE 3D CONCERT EXPERIENCE" came out in theaters on February 2009.
The film was directed by Bruce Hendricks (producer of the "Pirates of the Caribbean" films and "Pearl Harbor") and cinematography by Mitchell Amundsen ("G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra", "Wanted", "Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert Tour", "Transformers"and "Transporter 2') and Reed Smoot "Circque du Soleil: Journey of Man", "Mystery of the Nile" and "Mummies: Secrets of the Pharaohs").
Needless to say, when it comes to idol-based music films or concerts, they are literally targeted towards their fandom and demographic. Those not familiar with the Jonas Brothers or care for their music are probably not going to have much of an interest in the film. But for those who do enjoy the group's music, "JONAS BROTHERS - THE 3D CONCERT EXPERIENCE: DELUXE EXTENDED MOVIE" is actually an enjoyable release. First off, you get four 3D glasses and you can enjoy the film in either its 3D or 2D presentation via Blu-ray. You get the DVD and a digital copy for a total of 3-Discs.
The following songs are featured in "JONAS BROTHERS - THE 3D CONCERT EXPERIENCE":
1. "Tonight" (Intro/Opening Credits)
2. "That's Just the Way We Roll"
3. "Hold On"
4. "BB Good"
5. "Goodnight and Goodbye"
6. "Video Girl"
7. "Gotta Find You"
8. "This Is Me" (Demi Lovato & Jonas Brothers)
9. "Hello Beautiful"
10. "Still In Love With You"
11. "Pushin' Me Away"
12. "Should've Said No" (Taylor Swift & Jonas Brothers)
13. "Love Is on Its Way"
15. "Burnin' Up"
Additional performances featured on the DVD Extended Version
16. "Can't Have You"
17. "A Little Bit Longer"
For the film, you get a good balance of concert and also other activities such as the guys picking up the release of their third album, the fake Jonas Brothers and a lot of footage of their hardcore fans. Also, the group performing with their band outdoors and backstage footage.
In terms of concert footage, having reviewed many concert releases on DVD, you often wonder how a concert looks like when it has a significant budget, this is a good example. There are cameras everywhere. Multiple angles, closeups, front, sideways, behind the band, above the band in a various angles you name it, there's a camera. Editor Michael Tronick (Editor for "Hudson Hawk","Bedtime Stories", "Days of Thunder", "S.W.A.T.", "Mr. and Mrs. Smith) did an absolutely great job with the cut footage. No dizzying quick cuts, gives the viewer time to adjust and enjoy the ambiance of the crowded concert with its many fans and their light sticks. The group and band with their constant movement throughout the stage. It's well done!
The lighting is well done and very good lighting from purple, pinks, greens, blues, ambers. And again, the larger production budget definitely shows with the stage set-up.
As for the 3D portion, I'm not the biggest fan of 3D because seldom does it work effectively (with the exception of the 3D shows I have seen at Disneyland) but for "JONAS BROTHERS - THE 3D CONCERT EXPERIENCE", for the most part, the 3D works. From Nick Jonas throwing a drum stick to the drummer and Taylor Swift flicking her guitar pick towards the camera. Those instances were enjoyable.
For the most part, 3D is used to show the audiences arms and light sticks and moreso, bringing out the performers and giving a visual depth when Joe Jonas is seen at the front and everyone is seen directly behind. Also, 3D is used quite a bit during the scenes with cast and crew credits. Also, seeing flames from the stage, the mic and mic stand right by you.
Where it's not effective is certain shots where you can see lines on the faces (for example, during the Jonas Brothers performance with Demi Lovato) during the 3D portion. And this happens a few times during the film. But for the most part, the 3D does work and some scenes that were quite effective. I had a few people with varying eyesight test out the 3D glasses during the play of the concert and interesting enough, each person had different experiences with the one with better eyesight feeling that everything was much more alive and coming out to them visually.
Of course, for those who don't care for 3D can select 2D on the Blu-ray disc and also, the 2D version is included on the optional DVD and digital copy.
VIDEO & AUDIO:
"JONAS BROTHERS - THE 3D CONCERT EXPERIENCE: DELUXE EXTENDED MOVIE" is featured in 1080p High Definition (1:85:1). Of course, quality is a non-issue during the 3D portion but for the 2D portion included, the film is quite vibrant in colors. As mentioned above, there is a lot of lighting in this concert and colors really come out quite well in this film. If there is one thing that I'm always confident from a release from Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment, every Blu-ray release has had solid picture quality and this film is no exception.
Colors come out quite well during the concert, audience faces can be seen from a distance, blacks are nice and deep. No low-light noise, overall for a concert related release, this is probably one of the best looking concerts I have seen on Blu-ray but considering not many concerts are shot with this large of a budget and is shown as a feature film.
And the audio is fantastic. Disney went for the 7.1 English DTS-HD Master Audio. So you have the front channels delivering the music and vocals. The rear surrounds delivering the audience. Great use of LFE as my subwoofer was being used during the concert. It's an immersive soundtrack and if I had to really nitpick, I wish the explosions had a little more kick but overall, the concert presentation given the DTS-HD Master Audio track was quite exceptional.
"JONAS BROTHERS - THE 3D CONCERT EXPERIENCE: DELUXE EXTENDED MOVIE" comes with a few special features. Included are:
* BONUS SONGS of "LOVE BUG" and "SHELF" - Both the Blu-ray and DVD feature two performances not included in the extended version of the film. "LOVE BUG" (3:41) features the group rehearsing and practicing with their band and goofing around. And then shots of the group performing live in concert with the band. "SHELF" (4:25) features the group performing live.
* BACKSTAGE DISNEY: Up Close & Personal with the Jonas Brothers - (15:09) An in-depth look at the Jonas Brothers as they recall the challenges they had in their career and remembering how they performed at small venues two years ago and now they are performing at larger venues. How they planned the stage along with their crew and working together with everyone (musicians and crew) and treating them like a family. Working with Rob Brenner (Tour Director) and a behind-the-scenes look at rehearsals and challenges they had to face. Promotional tours and being thankful to their fans. An enjoyable featurette.
* Dylan & Cole Sprouse: Blu-ray is Suite (DVD Only) - (5:57) A promotional by the "Suite Life with Zack and Cody" stars promoting Blu-ray.
I've reviewed many concerts on DVD and beginning to review more on Blu-ray but I have to say that this release is quite solid. The Jonas Brothers and their music may not be for everyone but for fans, this is a solid release. It's well-produced, well-edited and again, not may concerts get the higher production (nor do they get a feature film and featured in 3D). You get one of the best looking concerts on Blu-ray with a pretty awesome soundtrack.
For fans of the Jonas Brothers, you really can't go wrong with "JONAS BROTHERS - THE 3D CONCERT EXPERIENCE: DELUXE EXTENDED MOVIE". Disney went all out in giving fans the 2D and 3D version on Blu-ray, plus the Extended Movie on DVD and the DisneyFile Digital Copy.
Personally, I thought it was a well-done concert. Watching a male pop band doing acrobatics during their performance might not be for everyone but having reviewed many female and male idol concerts from Japan and other parts of world, this is pretty standard, so I was not put off by it at all.
Also, I am aware of the negative reviews from critics for this film but at the same time, older critics (or critics with little leeway with their own musical tastes) having to watch a concert featuring an idol pop band, a teen audience and having to listen to bubblegum pop and taking them out of their musical element is not going to gain any positive or favorable reviews.
I personally enjoyed the music and the film and was impressed by the overall production, lighting, editing and the many camera angles. I've reviewed many concerts worldwide and the truth is that many bands or music artists get this high of a production value in their setup (or a feature film) as the Jonas Brothers have received in this film alone. So, its always interesting to see those rare concert opportunities taken to the big screen (and in 3D) that receive such a high production and big budget boost. And of course, to see it receive the Walt Disney Pictures treatment. I was impressed!
If there is one thing that could have been focused on in the film and not put in the special features portion is showing the challenge the Jonas Brothers have faced in the last three years. From being dropped by Columbia Records and through the use of Internet grassroots marketing and receiving the opportunities on the Disney Channel shows, this group was able to go farther in their career and it would have nice to see a backstory of how these guys came from obscurity to the idol pop group phenoms they are now. But in the end, this was a film created for their fans.
Even Demi Lovato and Taylor Swift fans can enjoy their appearance in the film. The production quality is quite high with this release and with that being said, Disney goes all out once again for another awesome Blu-ray release featuring top notch picture and audio quality that the Jonas Brothers fans can and will definitely be proud of!