Pet Shop Boys Dreamworld (2023)

January 31st, 2024
Author: Meredith Taylor

David Barnard | Musical Concert film 120′

Who’d have thought a couple of English lads from Tyneside would make it to multi-millionaire status. Not only coining it, but also giving pleasure to their international fanbase for the past four decades.

David Barnard’s concert film sets the summery scene in  Copenhagen’s Royal arena last July where a jubilant Danish crowd  cheer the opening number In Suburbia kicking off the Pet Shop Boys’ latest musical extravaganza.

Enveloped in white trenches and black polos ‘The Boys’ – aka Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe – soon emerge from behind their silver sci-fi masks beaming on the audience against a background of monochrome moving images – Tennant – now 69 – on vocals and Lowe on keyboards rol seamlessly through a series of singable classics – each one memorable and unique: The Streets have No Name, I love you, you pay the Rent  Why Don’t We Try. A backing band joins them for I Could Leave You. Rocking a white fez and tuxedo Tennent turns up the tempo for a bilingual single That’s the Way Life is.

Things get more jovial when Tennant shares a personal memory about a trip to the Caribbean with his long term partner Lowe. This segues into Domino Dancing, Monkey Business, New York City Boy and the tortuously poignant Jealousy.

Another change of tone and a saturnine makeover ushers in the ironically titled Love Comes Quickly, Neil moving stealthily across a moody mood-board of scarlet, indigo and vermilion.

The tone morphs again with Lowe, mysterious in a baseball cap and shades, finally takes to the vocals with his flattened-out North Eastern vowels for Maybe I didn’t Treat You. Tennant, suave in silver, steps forward for a solo sparkler Dreamland with female backing transforming the syncopated vibes into Heartbeat. How Am I gonna Get through This, Go West and It’s A Sin making the most of the rhythm.

Barnard – best known for his concert films featuring Gorillaz, Nick Cave and Eric Clapton, adds an artful touch with some impressive aerial photography, ushering in the ultimate showpiece with my personal fave West End Girls suitably sung by Tennent in a dark grey suit amid street lamps.

A finale of We Were Never Being Boring brings this heady trip down memory lane to a jubilant showdown as Tennant and Lowe continue to give delight to millions. Guaranteed to light up your January Pet Shop Boys Dreamworld is a real shot in the arm for those Winter blues. @MeredithTaylor

PET SHOP BOYS DREAMWORLD: THE GREATEST HITS LIVE AT THE ROYAL ARENA COPENHAGEN is showing in cinemas worldwide on Wednesday, January 31 & Sunday, February 4, 2024 only

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