Jonathan DemmeUSA90 minutes2015ColourEnglish
Oscar winner Jonathan Demme (The Silence of the Lambs, Stop Making Sense) directs this thrilling concert doc that captures the spectacular closing performances of the pop superstar’s world tour in Las Vegas.
Justin Timberlake and The Tennessee Kids spent two years on the road for their 20/20 Experience tour. Knowing it was something special, Timberlake arranged for the final nights in Las Vegas to be captured on film by director Jonathan Demme. This documentary puts you closer than any ticket buyer, starting beneath the stage as Timberlake huddles the band for an emotional pep talk. Dressed in Tom Ford tuxedos, they evoke Sinatra's era. "Look to your right, look to your left," says Timberlake, "that's who this show is for." If he sounds like a sports captain, it's because these performers deliver the moves — bouncing, sidestepping, spinning, and gyrating — only beyond athletics, they're also singing and playing instruments.
Demme has directed a wide breadth of music videos and concert films, but what attracted Timberlake was the filmmaker's iconic work with the Talking Heads: Stop Making Sense. You can tell that Timberlake is a student of that collaboration. His team delivers an arena-sized spectacle, paying careful attention to lighting, costume, and choreography. Cinematographer Declan Quinn pulls out all the stops, putting us on stage with cameras from every angle, seamlessly edited by Paul Snyder.
Timberlake has a charismatic persona and stage presence. Over the years, he's had memorable acting cameos in films like The Social Network and Inside Llewyn Davis. His magnetic performance here shows how much he deserves starring roles. You can't take your eyes off him as he moves through hits like "Suit & Tie," "SexyBack," "Rock Your Body," and mixes in some surprises. Enjoy the seduction.