Metallica’s big budget, high-profile concert film 'Metallica Through the Never' is currently streaming on Netflix. Those subscribers to the service who have a streaming plan can watch the movie anytime they want for the foreseeable future. Be aware, however, that oftentimes movies are only available online for a very limited amount of time; the duration depends on the licensing deal between Netflix and the movie’s studio. In other words, try to watch it sooner rather than later.
Don’t let the film’s disappointing box office or incomprehensible plot deter you from seeing it. 'Metallica Through the Never' is not the typical concert/documentary hybrid in the vein of recent releases by Katy Perry and One Direction. Nor is it a straight-up concert film, although there’s plenty of live footage of the band on stage. There are no interviews with the band, and there’s no footage of them talking to shrinks either ala 'Some Kind of Monster.' Instead, it’s a throwback to the type of movies that came out in the 1970s, such as Pink Floyd’s 'The Wall' and most especially Led Zeppelin’s 'The Song Remains the Same.'
The spectacular concert footage is worth it alone. Director Nimród Antal’s cameras are everywhere: on stage, in the audience, even prowling around in the rafters. His kinetic direction has resulted in perhaps the most immersive concert film of all time. Antal seemed an odd, uninspired choice at first because his work in films such as 'Vacancy,' 'Armored' and 'Predators' didn’t give too much indication of the phenomenal job he would do here. By the way, this movie is being streamed in high-definition, and it looks and sounds extraordinary.
There is a plot to the movie, involving a Metallica roadie named Trip, portrayed by actor Dane DeHaan ('Chronicle,' 'The Amazing Spider-Man 2'), being sent out from the gig to find a broken down truck and retrieve…something in a carry case. Whatever’s in the case is apparently a very big deal but is never revealed, exactly like the MacGuffin in 'Pulp Fiction.' The storyline doesn’t make any sense at all – maybe you need to swallow one of those pills DeHaan helps himself to at the start of the movie. A much bigger gripe about the movie is the stage that Metallica is shown performing on. It is definitely one of the coolest stages ever constructed in the history of live music – not only is it massive, it is equipped with an insane amount of pyro, lasers, flash pots, cross-shaped gravestones that pop up during “Master of Puppets” and even a huge electric chair complete with real lightning. Even the stage floor is amazing: it’s constructed out of video screens. At one point during Metallica’s opening song, “Creeping Death,” those screens make it appear that the entire stage is being covered in blood. Alas, however, the stage was built specifically for the movie and was never actually used during any Metallica tour.
In the grand scheme of the universe, however, these beefs are pretty trivial and will not detract from an extremely entertaining viewing experience. See it now, while you still can, and do yourself a favor: watch it on a big television equipped with a kick ass sound system. You won’t regret it, although your neighbors might.