Film review: Cirque du Soleil - Worlds Away

A few years ago I went on a girls' trip to Melbourne and in addition to shopping and dining we saw the Cirque du Soleil. Our mistake was to go on the first night we were there.

The effects of a long day travelling left us semihysterical by the end of the performance and I have wondered since if it was one of the best things I have ever seen or just sleep deprivation talking.

After watching Cirque du Soleil: Worlds Away (Rialto) a sort of ''Best Of'' various shows, strung together with a loose narrative by Kiwi director Andrew Adamson, I finally knew that night in Melbourne had been truly spectacular.

Part of the magic is that what the cinema gives us is so different from a live performance yet reinforces that experience. If you have seen one of their shows there is so much happening at any one time you have to operate as your own editor deciding what to concentrate on.

The film chooses for you and gives you an intimacy impossible even from the VIP seats. Yet never having seen Cirque du Soleil is no bar to being mesmerised by the artistry of the performances captured on film.

Adamson has been clever in giving us enough to thrill and then stopping before we reach sensory overload. As a taster or a reminder this film is the best calling card the Cirque du Soleil could have.

Best thing: Getting up so close makes the stage craft even more incredible.

Worst thing: Maybe I have just become acclimatised to it but the 3-D was underwhelming.

See it with: A rekindled fantasy of running away to join the circus.

Director: Andrew Adamson
Cast: Erica Linz, Igor Zaripov, Lutz Halbhubner, John Clarke, Dallas Barnett
Rating: (G)
5 stars (out of 5)

By Christine Powley.