Something strange happened at the weekend. I went to a Katy Perry movie. And I liked it.
That's not to say I haven't enjoyed the purple/pink/blue- haired popster's music over the years - but the thought of sitting through a concert film with a group of over-excited teenage girls wasn't exactly how I envisaged spending a sunny Sunday afternoon.
So what a nice surprise it was to come away from this concert documentary chronicling Perry's life on and off-stage with a catchy tune in my head and a new-found appreciation for a performer who has to be admired for doggedly pursuing her dream and inspiring millions of young people around the world to do the same.
Filmed during her 2011 world tour, Katy Perry: Part of Me has been branded as "backstage pass, front row seat and intimate look" at the life of one of the world's most popular singers and it delivers on all three counts.
Peppered with live performances of her biggest hits including Last Friday Night, Teenage Dream, California Gurls and Firework, it charts the 27-year-old's rise from Katherine Elizabeth Hudson - the daughter of evangelical pastors who forbid their children from listening to "secular music" - to multi Grammy Award-nominee Katy Perry, whose first single I Kissed A Girl was as successful as it was shocking for her God-fearing mum. "I didn't even know who Michael Jackson was until I was 14," Perry says.
Through interviews with Perry and those closest to her, we learn how she was recognised for her vocal talents singing gospel music at 15. But she had to fight for her own identity after being dropped by three record labels who were looking for the next Avril Lavigne or Kelly Clarkson. "I just want to be the first Katy Perry," Perry says.
She was eventually signed by Capital and became the first female star with five consecutive US number one singles from one album (2010's Teenage Dream) and 40 million album/single sales.
Directed by Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz (Justin Bieber: Never Say Never) and produced by Thomas Benski, the man behind Blur: No Distance Left to Run and Take That: Look Back Don't Stare, Part of Me is a riot of colourful, fun-filled performances, anecdotes from family/friends and glowing endorsements from fans and fellow musicians, including Adele and Lady Gaga.
However, while 2011 was a stellar year for the singer, seeing her named Artist of the Year by MTV, her personal life took a battering. She makes no mention of her previous relationships - including her romance with Gym Class Heroes frontman Travie McCoy - but there's no shying away from her divorce last year from comedian/actor Russell Brand, who features at various times.
Perry hears from her husband of just 14 months that their marriage is over just before one of her concerts in Brazil and we then see Perry backstage, bare-faced and broken, sobbing uncontrollably.
Faced with two choices - to cancel the show or put on a brave face and greet her audience - Perry opts for the latter, rising above the stage to the screams of thousands of excited South Americans.
Cynics may say the self-funded Katy Perry: Part of Me is nothing more than a marketing ploy to sell more records. But while there is no doubt the film is sure to see a spike in record sales, it's still an insightful, fun and touching documentary if you let yourself - as one fan put it - be "shot with an arrow of Katy Perryness".Katy Perry: Part of Me 3-D is now screening.
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