Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping is the newest project from The Lonely Island, or most famously known as the musical parody group that SNL alum, Andy Samberg, belongs to. After the humorless film 7 Days in Hell, which aired appropriately on HBO, I was not looking forward to another Samberg mockumentary. However, Popstar brings a fresh take, or should I say hilarious take on the music world.
Popstar isn’t an instant classic, but it surely packs a punch to all celebrity egos. Conner Friel, or Conner4Real, as he’s best known as, is played by Samberg. Conner portrays a characterization of everything wrong with celebrities believing their own bull shit. But mostly, just everything wrong with Justin Bieber’s bizarre and immature personality. Conner originally came to fame through his Beastie Boys-esque group named the Style Boyz, portrayed by fellow Lonely Island members, Akiva Schaffer (Lawrence) and Jorma Taccone (Owen). But like all boy bands from the 90s, one member emerged from the group victorious, to venture on as a solo performer. That character is none other than Connor4Real. The more famous Conner becomes, and the more he starts think everything he says is golden, Conner’s world begins to spin out of control.
Now, love is a strong adjective when describing this film, but I’ll use it anyway. My love for this film is surprising. After all, my past experience with Samberg’s comedic acting, was in my opinion, mediocre at best. This could be another positive spell for the comedian, but I beg to differ. The storyline was funny, which literally had me laughing out loud in theatres. What I enjoyed about this film was that it wasn’t just Samberg constantly poking fun at the music industry, but it was the real-life celebrities joking about themselves. There is one scene, without giving too much away, with Mariah Carey being interviewed at the beginning of the film. Carey’s statement had people in the theatre roaring with laughter. Priceless!
But as funny as the storyline is, nothing was more mind-blowing than the music. This is a soundtrack to keep on your shelf. As The Lonely Island uses their incredible music skills, paired with the music stylings of Adam Levine and Pink, the soundtrack becomes an entertaining backdrop for Popstar to really unload that comedic talent on the audience.
There are a few missteps and jokes that go on for WAY too long. For example, the spoof of TMZ became that “okay, I get it” type of scene. But for the most part, Samberg, along with his fellow Lonely Island members, deliver a stellar comedy that’s worth more than just one view. This is a movie, as well as a soundtrack, that you can enjoy over and over again.
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping
Written by: Andy Samberg, Akiva Schaffer, and Jorma Taccone
Directed by: Akiva Schaffer and Jorma Taccone
Starring: Andy Samberg, Akiva Schaffer, Jorma Taccone, Sarah Silverman, and Tim Meadows