The film is threaded through with hagiographic assessments from Perry’s hangers-on regarding her talent, her cultural importance, and most laughably, her authenticity. In insisting that Perry is, as one member of the team puts it, “like a real girl”—a simile that has a range of connotations, from Pinocchio to porn—they’re willfully misrepresenting Perry’s appeal. We’re talking about a pop star who invented a headgear-rocking-nerd alter-ego for the video for “Last Friday Night,” a song about binge drinking and threesomes; she has to know she’s selling a blown-out fantasy of party-girl invincibility to an audience too young to recognize the gulf between a living cartoon singing ingeniously insipid lyrics and an actual adult woman’s reality. “Thank you so much for believing in my weirdness!” Perry tells one crowd. It’s maybe the most honest moment in the movie—an acknowledgement that Katy Perry’s brand depends on a suspension of disbelief.