I don’t know if we’ve stated this before or not on our blog, but this site isn’t a movie review site. We aren’t critics so we don’t analyze and deconstruct films–and we don’t want to pretend to either. However, we can give our opinions on them and talk about how they make us feel.
Such is the case with This Is It. To set you up, I had no desire to see this movie. It’s not that I don’t like MJ or anything like that but I didn’t really have any interest in seeing a concert movie. On the flip though I’m almost always down to see any movie as long as the previews for it don’t look ridiculously horrid. Fortunately I took up an offer to see the movie Tuesday evening. What I saw was a portrait of a legend still bringing IT to everything he does. This was not going to be the concert pic I was thinking it was going to be.
Here’s what stood out to me from the film:
1. You get to see behind the curtain :: As I found out, the movie was more of a documentary on how the King of Pop’s concerts were going to be rather than just showing footage of him performing. Things were rough, he’d stop in the middle of performances to give direction, he’d talk to dancers and musicians–all the details of putting this concert together were there. Needless to say the man was meticulous, he knew how he wanted the notes and beat of the music to flow and he’d take the time to make sure everything came out right. Believe it or not MJ even had a humorous side with footage shown of him cracking a few one liners and joking with the crew. Most of the time we only saw Michael Jackson as the legend who developed a number of great songs and performances . . . or as the oddity who made news headlines for questionable activities. What I enjoyed most from this film is that we got to see how he became the King of Pop and why he deserves the title.
2. The man still has it :: For being 50 years old he still looked as good when he was 22 (when Thriller came out). As I mentioned previously, at the time the footage was shot, MJ still has all the moves and singing that made him the great performer that he was. The dance steps are all there as well as the voice. Even though these were only rehearsals and he didn’t seem to be going all out, it’s still impressive the amount of feeling he could bring to these practice sessions and only makes you wonder how much better he would have been had the lights been up and the arena filled with fans.
3. The concert would have been amazing :: While I’m sure everyone would have been happy with Michael singing and dancing, the performance, stage, and spectacle are all part of the package of any Michael Jackson performance and this one looked to be the best ever. With elaborate stage effects, lots of additional video footage shot, amazing choreography and pyrotechnics it really is a shame that we won’t get to see this show.
4. It doesn’t address his death :: Probably above all, I appreciated the fact that the movie didn’t address Michael’s impending death and the events leading up to it. It’s something that would have been so easy to do, so I’m thankful that the creator of the film decided not to go in that direction. What we are shown is the King of Pop’s final performance, and a great one at that. And that’s how he really should be remembered.
Since officially the film is supposedly only going to have a two week engagement, I highly recommend that you check it out. And if you do see This Is It, stay till the end as there are four scenes after the credits finish that are worth waiting for.