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Justin Bieber: Never Say Never Reviews

Belinda Luscombe
TIME Magazine
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December 7, 2011
Rafer Guzman
Newsday
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December 7, 2011
Bruce Diones
New Yorker
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It has come to this: parents who have recorded their children's lives since infancy can see their home films edited into their child's very own 3-D concert documentary.

Full Review Source: New Yorker

February 22, 2011
David Edelstein
New York Magazine
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I find him such a bland, pious, profoundly unthreatening little Furby of a pop idol, but little girls' celebrity crushes are not to be trifled with. And this sensationally engineered promo film makes Justin Bieber look like a true force of nature.

Full Review Source: New York Magazine

February 14, 2011
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
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The movie remains so sanitized, so authorized that it never gives us credit for being able to make up our own minds about him and what he represents.

Full Review Source: Newark Star-Ledger | Original Score: 2.5/4

February 11, 2011
Tom Charity
CNN.com
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Bieber's unquestionably gifted, and if he's smart enough to listen to the grounded, talented folk around him, there's every reason to hope that he'll turn out to be just fine when he grows up.

Full Review Source: CNN.com

February 11, 2011
David Edelstein
NPR
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The movie is cunningly woven to show the tension between his insane success and his determination to remain a sane, normal 16-year-old.

Full Review Source: NPR

February 11, 2011
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
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Part biopic, part concert film and all crowd pleaser, Justin Bieber: Never Say Never is a big, glossy celebration of the musical phenom that knows exactly what it needs to do to send its target audience of 'tween girls into a tizzy of giddy screams.

Full Review Source: Associated Press

February 11, 2011
Lou Lumenick
New York Post
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An interminable documentary punctuated by perhaps half an hour of heavily edited 3-D performance footage.

Full Review Source: New York Post | Original Score: 1.5/4

February 11, 2011
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
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Never Say Never is a 3D concert film to delight the shy 13-year-old with braces that lives in all of us, but after a while the movie starts to feel like lethal injection by bubblegum.

Full Review Source: Rolling Stone | Original Score: 2/4

February 11, 2011
James Adams
Globe and Mail
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Equal parts biopic, concert film and pep rally, the movie's 105 minutes do a good job of conveying the pleasures of pop, courtesy of the very real talents of Justin Bieber.

Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Original Score: 2.5/4

February 11, 2011
Adam Graham
Detroit News
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What the movie lacks in genuine insight it makes up for in what fans really want: gazing shots at the Biebz whipping his hair back and forth.

Full Review Source: Detroit News | Original Score: B-

February 11, 2011
David Malitz
Washington Post
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"Never Say Never" is sort of like the featured piece of a political nominating convention. It's a fluffy, mildly inspiring, celebration of the hero leading up to his big moment.

Full Review Source: Washington Post | Original Score: 2.5/4

February 11, 2011
Peter Hartlaub
San Francisco Chronicle
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Young fans will lose their minds, although that would have happened if the film consisted of an hour and 45 minutes of Bieber brushing his teeth. Adult chaperones who care nothing of the star's music will find the film surprisingly tolerable.

Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Original Score: 2/4

February 10, 2011
Scott Bowles
USA Today
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That Never doesn't work as a biopic isn't a surprise. Bieber's too young to paint a picture with much context.

Full Review Source: USA Today | Original Score: 2/4

February 10, 2011
Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer
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What the 3-D film lacks in cinematic charm and ingenuity is compensated for by its subject's high-wattage charisma and low-key earnestness.

Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer | Original Score: 3/4

February 10, 2011
Jon Bream
Minneapolis Star Tribune
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A sweetly entertaining, canny celebration of the pop heartthrob du jour.

Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune | Original Score: 3/4

February 10, 2011
Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News
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[Bieber is] the perfect first crush, and this is the perfect movie for someone currently experiencing that crush.

Full Review Source: New York Daily News | Original Score: 3/5

February 10, 2011
Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
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Somebody on screen - you forget who all the adults are; they're not important - describes Bieber as "the Macaulay Culkin of music," which seems right, if a little sad.

Full Review Source: Seattle Times | Original Score: 1.5/4

February 10, 2011
Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
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It's vaguely like the fascinating Michael Jackson performance documentary, "This Is It.''

Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Original Score: 2.5/4

February 10, 2011
Mike Hale
New York Times
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At 105 minutes it's exhausting, even though it has been expertly cut together.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 2.5/5

February 10, 2011
Mark Olsen
Los Angeles Times
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Strictly as a piece of filmmaking, Never Say Never is a bit of a mess.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times | Original Score: 2.5/5

February 10, 2011
James Rocchi
MSN Movies
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The degree of hero-making in effect is unintentionally hilarious -- much of [it] plays like a campaign ad, or a career-highlights montage you'd see for someone's retirement

Full Review Source: MSN Movies | Original Score: 2/5

February 10, 2011
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
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You don't know whether to damn Bieber and Chu for manipulating our emotions or praise them for trying to put some essence into this effervescence.

Full Review Source: Toronto Star | Original Score: 2.5/4

February 10, 2011
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
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"Never Say Never" is about as revealing as a Canadian snowmobile suit.

Full Review Source: Orlando Sentinel | Original Score: 2/4

February 10, 2011
Michael Rechtshaffen
Hollywood Reporter
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An undeniably engaging musical portrait that delivers major bangs for the buck.

Full Review Source: Hollywood Reporter

February 9, 2011
Andrew Barker
Variety
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Though anyone who needs convincing won't touch this one with a 10-foot pole, Justin Bieber: Never Say Never makes a persuasive case for its titular star as a far more talented-than-usual teen idol.

Full Review Source: Variety

February 9, 2011
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
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Justin Bieber: Never Say Never may be the concert film as glorified promotional product, but it captures a genuine youthquake.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: B+

February 9, 2011
Keith Uhlich
Time Out New York
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Bieber seems consistently unfazed by all the cooks in the kitchen; it's as if he's holding something special back, to be unveiled at a later date. Hopefully, the machine won't grind this one down before his prime.

Full Review Source: Time Out New York | Original Score: 3/5

February 9, 2011
Nick Pinkerton
Village Voice
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There's no scrimping on the Bieber here, but he's a curiously vague presence, obscured in the shadow of this monument to his brand.

Full Review Source: Village Voice

February 8, 2011
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